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VOL.  II. 





D.  APPLETON  &  CO., 




- o - 



A  General  Comparative  View  of  Syria,  .  .  .  .  1 


Review  of  the  Authorities  on  the  Geography  of  Palestine,  .  22 


The  Land  of  Canaan,  with  its  Inhabitants  as  existing  previous 

to  the  Conquest  of  the  Country  by  the  Israelites,  .  104 

1.  Names:  Aram  and  Syria;  Syrians,  Aramaeans,  and  Hebrews,  104 

2.  The  Land  of  Canaan  and  the  Canaanites  in  relation  to 

Phoenicia  and  the  Phoenicians,  .  .  .  .106 

8.  The  Primitive  Population  of  the  Country  prior  to  its  posses¬ 
sion  by  the  Israelites,  .  .  .  .  .115 

4.  Specification  of  the  Tribes  of  Canaan  in  its  broadest  sense : 
the  Perizzites,  Hittites,  Hivites,  Amorites,  Girgashites, 
and  Jebusites,  .  .  .  .  .  .119 


Tribes  living  outside  of  Canaan,  with  most  of  whom  the  Israel¬ 






The  Upper  Course  of  the  Jordan,  from  its  Source  to  the 
Waters  of  Merom,  ...... 

Discursion  1.  The  Sources  of  the  Jordan,  and  Upper  Course  as  far 

as  to  Lake  el-Huleh,  .... 





The  Middle  Stage  of  the  Jordan  Basin  from  el-Huleh  to  Lake 
of  Gennesareth,  ...... 

Discursion  1.  The  Cultivated  Plain  of  el-Batiheh  ;  et-Tell;  the 

Two  Bethsaidas  in  Galilee  and  Gaulonitis, 



2.  The  Sea  of  Galilee  or  Gennesareth — Chinnereth — The 

Sea  of  Tiberias — Names,  Situation,  Navigation, 
Aspect  of  the  Region  adjacent — Geological  Cha¬ 
racteristics — Hot  and  Cold  Springs,  Salt  Waters 
— Earthquakes,  Winds,  Climate — Nature  of  the 
Vegetation  on  the  Coast, 

3,  4.  The  Shores  of  the  Sea  of  Galilee,  . 

(1.)  The  Galilean  or  West  and  North-west  Side  of  the 
Lake,  ..... 

(2.)  The  South  and  South-east  Side  of  the  Lake, 

5.  The  Great  Caravan  Road  from  the  East  Side  of  the 
Lake  to  Damascus,  .... 









The  Lower  Course  of  the  Jordan,  from  Sea  of  Galilee  to  the 

Dead  Sea,  .......  287 

Discursion  1.  First  Attempt  to  navigate  the  Jordan  to  the  Dead 

Sea — Molyneux,  .....  287 

„  2.  The  first  Eastern  Tributary  of  the  Jordan  —  the 

Yarmuk  or  Sheriat  el  Mandara  (Hieromax) — Om 
Keis  (Gadara) — The  Hot  Springs  of  Hamath  or 
Amatta,  ......  299 



Discursion  3.  The  Three  North-westerly  Tributaries  between  the 

Sea  of  Galilee  and  Beishan — Tabor  and  Hermon, 

„  4.  Wadi  Beisan — The  City  of  Beisan  and  the  Mountains 

of  Gilboa — Jezreel,  . 

,,  5.  The  Jordan  Yalley  south  of  Beisan,  with  the  Western 

Tributaries  as  far  as  Jericho, 

,,  6.  Partial  Corrections  and  Additions  supplementary  to 

the  Accounts  of  Burckhardt  and  De  Bertou, 

7.  Schultz’  Excursions  from  Shiloh  to  Kefr  Istunah 

(Alexandrium),  Karn  el  Sartabeh,  Karijut 
(Korese),  Burj  el  Fari’a,  and  el-Bassalija 
(Archelais),  . 

8.  Wadi  Fassail  and  its  Palm  Gardens, 

9.  Dr  Barth’s  Excursions  between  the  Jordan  and 

Nablus  in  1847,  ..... 

10.  General  Observations  regarding  the  great  Line  of 
Watershed ;  the  Absolute  and  Relative  Heights 
of  Localities  on  the  West  Side  of  the  Jordan, 


I.  Geographical  Positions  according  to  C.  W.  M.  Van  de  Velde, 

II.  Altitudes  according  to  Van  de  Velde,  . 

III.  Tobler’s  Resume  of  Works  on  Palestine, 

IV.  Tristram’s  Discussion  on  Site  of  Capernaum, 

V.  Tristram’s  Visit  to  Beisan,  .... 
















- * - 



ROM  the  Sinai  Peninsula,  which  we  may  regard  as 
the  vestibule  of  Palestine,  we  advance  into  the 
Promised  Land  by  three  routes :  the  first  along  the 
shore  from  Gaza  to  Askelon ;  the  second  on  the 
track  of  the  pilgrims,  over  the  very  back  of  the  Tih  plateau, 
in  a  path  more  or  less  trodden  in  the  most  ancient  as  well  as 
in  comparatively  modern  and  in  most  recent  times — gradu¬ 
ally  exchanging  the  savage  waste  for  the  deepening  green  of 
the  outlying  southern  eminences  of  the  Jebel  Chalil  or  Hebron, 
once  inhabited  by  a  thronging  population,  and  covered  with 
cities;  and  the  third  by  the  route  which  has  been  re-opened 
within  our  days — the  most  easterly  one  of  all — that  of  Wadi 
Musa,  through  the  depression  of  the  Araba  and  el-Ghor  to  the 
southern  extremity  of  the  Dead  Sea,  where  the  great  gorge 
which  runs  through  the  whole  length  of  Palestine  finds  its  key, 
and  solves  the  entire  physical  character  of  the  country. 

Pursuing  the  habitual  manner  in  which  I  have  dealt  with 
other  countries,  I  shall  not  undertake  to  limit  myself  to  such 
an  exhaustive  account  of  Palestine  as  would  meet  the  wants  of 
a  biblical  student:1  this  has  been  well  and  thoroughly  done  by 
H.  Reland  and  by  K.  von  Raumer.  We  have  to  do  with  a 
district  which  does  not  reveal  itself  to  us  in  its  highest  interests 

1  As  this  preliminary  survey  is  literally  rendered  into  English  from  the 
German,  Ritter’s  expression  must  be  applied  rather  to  his  own  work  than 
to  this  condensed  translation,  which  has  been  prepared  with  express  refer¬ 
ence  to  the  wants  of  biblical  students. — Ed. 

YOL.  II. 




when  studied  in  its  own  special  sections  and  subdivisions,  but 
in  its  relation  to  all  the  countries  which  surround  it,  and  in 
fact  to  the  entire  world ;  and  with  a  district,  too,  where  all  the 
phenomena  of  national  and  individual  life  are  so  inextricably 
mingled  with  those  of  the  physical  conditions  of  the  country, 
that  the  result  is  a  blending  of  characteristics  so  varied  and 
comprehensive  that  there  is  not  a  land  or  a  nation  which  does 
not  find  something  of  itself  reflected  there.1 

As  it  is  nowhere  mere  rough  power  or  external  greatness 
which  gains  sway  in  the  higher  departments  of  affairs,  but  the 
inward  force,  the  soul  of  fire,  the  strong  heart,  so  is  it  with  the 
might  and  the  authority  of  territorial  domains.  Palestine  be¬ 
longs,  so  far  as  mere  size  is  concerned,  to  the  smallest  and  most 
insignificant  countries  on  the  earth ;  but  its  name  is  one  of 
those  most  often  spoken  and  most  universally  loved.  Wherever 
Christian  men  are  found,  there  it  is  a  hallowed  name,  to  which 
sacred  thoughts,  feelings,  associations,  and  convictions  cling, 
and  which  is  bound  up  with  all  that  is  most  valued  by  the 
judgment  or  dear  to  the  heart.  And  wherever  heathen  nations 
are  found  upon  the  earth,  there  this  Holy  Land  is  yet  to  be 
loved,  until  all  eyes  shall  rest  upon  it  as  the  birth-place  of  the 
true  faith,  and  the  scene  of  the  grandest  revelations  ever  made 
by  God  to  man. 

And  even  the  very  banished  children  of  Palestine,  who 
never  advanced  beyond  the  knowledge  of  God’s  Ictiv,  and  never 
accepted  the  fulfilling  of  that  law  in  the  words  and  works  of  the 
Saviour  of  mankind,  are  still  bound  to  the  country  which  their 
fathers  loved,  and  conquered,  and  possessed.  Their  circle  of 
ideas  does  not  yet  free  itself  from  the  land  from  which  they 
have  been  driven  out.  The  patriarchal  ties — the  belief  in 
Jehovah  the  one  God  of  their  ancestors — the  temple  built  on 
Moriah — the  splendid  procession  of  judges,  prophets,  lawgivers, 
psalmists,  and  kings — the  very  conquest  which  subdued  their 
nation,  and  the  banishment  which  made  them  exiles,  have  con¬ 
spired  to  perpetuate  the  bond  which  binds  the  Jewish  people  to 
their  former  home.  Thither  hundreds  of  Hebrews  even  now 
wander  back,  after  troubled  and  shipwrecked  lives,  to  find  in 
the  land  of  their  fathers  a  peaceful  resting-place,  at  least  for 

1  See  this  point  finely  developed  in  the  opening  pages  of  Stanley’s  and 
Tr;s tarn’s  works  on  Palestine.  — Ed. 



their  bones.  They  come  from  the  East  as  well  as  from  the 
West,  longing  for  peace,  and  lay  themselves  down  in  a  land 
which  is  theirs  only  as  they  may  purchase  some  little  fragment 
of  it,  making  it  their  most  cherished  wish  to  die  and  be  buried 
under  the  sacred  shadow  of  Mount  Moriah. 

Even  their  conquerors  and  oppressors,  the  hard  and  wilful 
Arabs  and  Turks,  who  now  possess  the  land,  share  in  the  same 
fancy,  which,  though  it  be  a  folly,  yet  is  a  human  and  a  touch¬ 
ing  one.  The  Mohammedan  places  Palestine  only  second  in 
sacredness  to  the  birth-place  of  the  prophet;  and  Jerusalem 
they  designate  as  “  el-Kods,”  or  more  exactly,  “  el-Guds,”  the 
Holy  City.  The  pilgrimage  to  the  Haram,  i.e.  to  the  mosque 
which  the  Caliph  Omar  erected  on  the  site  of  the  temple  of 
Solomon,  is  the  most  meritorious  one  which  he  can  make, 
excepting  that  to  Mecca. 

Within  the  narrow  limits  of  Palestine  we  must  look  for  the 
foundations  of  that  kingdom  of  truth  as  well  as  of  error,  which 
has  now  become  a  subject  of  historic  inquiry :  we  must  trace 
the  latest  results  to  their  primitive  causes  in  the  geographical 
conditions  of  the  country :  for  even  here  there  is  opportunity 
for  such  agents  as  the  soil  under  man’s  foot,  and  the  atmosphere 
over  his  head,  to  have  influence.  If  every  garden  plot  owes  a 
part  of  the  rapid  progress  in  flowering  and  in  fruitage  to  the 
skilful  and  the  careful  hand  of  the  gardener,  cannot  every  land 
in  God’s  wide  creation  trace,  under  His  wise  direction,  some 
measure  of  mutual  action  and  reaction  between  the  country  and 
the  people  who  inhabit  it?  Our  historians  have  many  things 
yet  to  learn,  and  even  yet  they  continue  to  fall  into  one-sided 
speculations,  which  betray  them  and  lead  them  astray.  But  here 
is  one  elemental  truth :  history  does  not  lie  in  a  domain  adjoin¬ 
ing  nature,  so  to  speak,  but  actually  within  the  bosom  of  nature: 
history  and  nature  are  at  one,  as  God  looks  down  upon  them 
from  His  canopy  of  stars.  In  studying  the  human  soul,  the  mode 
of  its  training,  the  way  of  its  working — and  that  is  history — we 
cannot  leave  out  of  our  view  the  outward  field  in  which  it  finds 
its  home,  the  world  wdiere  it  meets  the  phenomena  which  it 
investigates.  In  spite  of  the  self-confidence  of  that  pretence 
which  science  sometimes  makes  in  the  person  of  some  of  her 
votaries,  of  finding  all  that  she  needs  within  the  soul  of  man, 
and  in  a  mere  world  of  subjective  realities,  we  may  boldly 



assert,  that  a  close  study  of  the  outward  world,  as  the  soul’s 
training  place,  is  the  only  true  key  to  history. 

And  such  a  close  connection  between  the  local  geography  of 
the  place  and  the  mental  characteristics  of  the  people,  is  espe¬ 
cially  to  be  traced  where  there  was  the  peculiar  simplicity  and 
closeness  to  nature  of  the  patriarchal  inhabitants  of  Palestine : 
a  simplicity  and  an  intimate  communion  with  the  fields  and  the 
waters  and  the  skies,  traceable  alike  in  the  meadows  of  Meso¬ 
potamia,  under  the  Assyrian  heavens,  and  in  the  land  to  which 
the  first  shepherds  found  their  way ;  alike  on  the  Euphrates 
and  on  the  Jordan,  at  the  foot  of  Ararat  and  of  Hermon.  To 
the  same  close  connection  can  be  traced  the  primitive  settlers’ 
wanderings  all  over  Canaan,  their  incursions  into  Arabian 
territory,  and  their  temporary  sojourn  in  Egypt,  then  as  much 
a  centre  in  respect  to  the  fertility  of  its  soil  as  to  intellectual 
culture.  To  the  same  may  be  traced  the  necessity  which 
called  for  the  giving  of  the  law  amid  the  thunders  of  Sinai,  and 
the  wandering  of  Israel  through  the  Arabian  desert.  Thither 
also  is  traceable  the  rise  of  twelve  tribes  in  a  land  flowing  with 
milk  and  honey,  hard  by  the  rocky  crags  of  Petrsea,  Judaea,  and 
Ephraim.  Here,  too,  we  find  the  significance  of  the  Jordan 
valley,  the  deep  course  of  the  Kedron,  and  the  gorge  which, 
as  it  opened,  swallowed  up  Sodom.  To  this  we  must  ascribe 
the  isolation  of  Jerusalem,  and  the  towering  up  of  Sion  and 
Moriah,  as  if  to  call  the  whole  world  unto  them.  In  this,  too, 
we  find  the  meaning  of  the  harbours,  the  seas,  the  cedars  of 
Lebanon,  the  dew  upon  Hermon,  the  fruitful  vale  of  Sharon, 
the  flowery  plain  of  Esdraelon,  the  beautiful  landscape  of 
Galilee  dotted  with  lakes,  and  the  barren  deserts  which  gird  the 
plains  and  the  palm  trees  of  Jericho. 

Who  can  deny  that  there  are  individual  features  in  the  physi¬ 
cal  character  of  a  country  which  are  not  to  be  merely  grouped  as 
inarticulate  and  dead  appendages  to  its  soil,  but  are  to  be  studied 
in  their  strong  reflex  action  on  the  life  of  the  people,  affecting 
local  traditions,  affecting  history,  affecting  the  life  of  nations 
and  states,  affecting  religion  and  all  thought?  And  if  our  earth 
does  not  swing  around  its  sun,  a  mere  dead,  inorganic  planet,  but 
an  organism,  a  living  work  from  the  hand  of  a  living  God,  there 
must  be  a  similar  close  and  vital  connection,  like  that  between 
body  and  soul,  between  nature  and  history,  between  a  land  and 



its  people,  between  physics  and  ethics,  if  I  may  so  speak.  It 
would  certainly  be  impossible  to  conceive  of  the  development 
of  such  a  history  as  that  of  Israel  taking  place  anywhere  else 
than  in  Palestine.  Nowhere  else  on  the  earth  could  that  series 
of  events,  and  that  peculiar  training  which  the  people  of  God 
had  to  pass  through,  have  found  a  theatre  so  conspicuous  to  the 
eyes  of  all  the  world  as  that  narrow  land  of  Palestine. 

To  grasp  such  a  fact  as  this  in  its  more  general  relations, 
and  to  hold  it  up ;  to  make  every  man  understand  how  much  is 
involved  in  the  individuality  of  each  country,  in  what  is  pecu¬ 
liarly  its  own  physical  features,  and  how  deep  and  wide  their 
influence  is  upon  man, — is  what  gives  to  the  science  of  geo¬ 
graphy  its  dignity  and  worth.  And  it  would  be  well  deserving 
of  much  patient  research,  to  trace  the  conditions  and  the  laws 
which  gave  character  to  the  primitive  abode  of  the  Hebrews, 
and  to  show  how  Providence  led  them  up  the  steps,  cut  as  it 
were  in  the  rocks  of  their  own  soil,  to  the  “  large  place”  for 
which  He  was  fitting  them ;  to  indicate,  too,  the  gain  which  the 
children  of  Israel  found  in  their  newly  won  Canaan ;  to  show 
how  in  that  gain  all  races  of  men  ever  since  have  shared,  and 
how  the  peculiarities  of  the  physical  structure  of  Palestine  have 
come  to  be  a  kind  of  possession,  so  to  speak,  to  men  living  at  the 
very  ends  of  the  earth.  The  need  is  great  for  an  exhaustive 
physical  geography  of  Palestine  ;  and  yet  it  must  be  confessed 
none  has  yet  been  written,  despite  the  reports  of  thousands  who 
have  visited  the  Holy  Land,  and  given  us  their  oral  or  their 
printed  reports.  It  is  only  within  the  latest  years  that  any 
attempt  in  this  direction  has  been  made,  and  no  thorough  re¬ 
sults  have  yet  been  attained.  The  work  which  I  offer  must 
therefore  be  a  tentative  effort,  rather  than  such  a  perfect  work 
as  can  some  day  be  expected,  but  for  which  the  materials  are 
not  yet  ready. 

Whoever  is  denied  the  privilege  of  looking  upon  the  face 
’  of  a  country  which  becomes  the  subject  of  his  study,  and  which 
has  been  the  scene  of  great  historical  events,  will  find  that 
those  very  events,  viewed  in  a  true  historical  light,  reflect  as 
from  a  perfect  mirror  the  physical  characteristics  of  the  country 
where  they  have  occurred,  and  from  which  their  influence  has 
gone  forth  to  other  parts  of  the  world.  To  stand  close  to  the 
subject  of  our  studies  is  not  always  best :  the  special  features 



are  brought  too  much  into  view ;  and  the  mind  is  in  peril  of 
being  led  astray,  of  losing  the  unity  of  the  subject,  and  of 
being  engulfed  and  lost  in  a  whirl  of  details.  The  personal 
observations  of  tourists  are  not  therefore  alwaj^s  pure  gold  to 
the  scientific  student,  because  very  few  tourists  have  the  acumen 
needful  for  the  highest  purposes  of  travel.  The  facts  which 
observers  bring  back  must  be  subjected  to  the  crucible  of  learn¬ 
ing  and  thought  before  they  become  truly  valuable ;  more 
especially,  they  must  be  subjected  to  the  touchstone  of  history, 
and  then  their  worth  or  their  lack  of  worth  appears.  Often¬ 
times  there  are  secrets  which  are  passed  over  in  a  hurried, 
superficial  way  for  hundreds  of  years,  before  the  man  comes 
who  can  bring  out  their  meaning,  and  set  them  in  a  clear, 
strong  light. 

That  this  has  been  the  case  with  Palestine,  admits  of  no 
question.  Of  the  hundreds  of  thousands  who  have  made  their 
pilgrimage  thither,  of  the  thousands  who  have  gone  for  the 
purpose  of  thorough  observation  and  inquiry,  how  few  there 
are  who,  with  all  that  they  have  brought  away  for  themselves, 
have  added  anything  to  the  possessions  of  others,  have  aug¬ 
mented  at  all  the  sum  of  human  knowledge  about  the  Holy 
Land !  A  man  cannot  stand  at  the  foot  of  a  very  lofty  object, 
and  distinctly  see  the  point  where  it  touches  the  clouds ;  and 
the  majority  of  those  pious  persons  who  visit  Palestine  are  so 
overcome  by  the  touching  associations  of  the  place,  that  they 
lose  their  cool  judgment,  cast  away  the  common  standards  by 
which  they  measure  the  objects  of  interest  in  less  hallowed 
spots,  and  give  us  little  which  in  a  scientific  point  is  valuable. 
One  who  stands  farther  away  may  be  better  able  to  discern  the 
summit,  than  one  who  stands  at  the  very  foot  of  a  mountain. 
On  the  wild  crags  of  Switzerland,  if  you  go  too  near,  you  are 
rewarded  only  by  the  view  of  an  inextricable  tangle  of  brush 
and  confused  rocks;  but  if  you  stand  at  a  distance,  you  can 
make  out  all  the  details,  and  have  before  you  the  unity  of  a 
single  combined  picture. 

It  is  not  otherwise  with  the  point  of  view  which  science  is 
compelled  to  take.  Yet  it  has  not  been  possible  at  all  times  for 
geographical  science  to  gain  such  a  point  of  view :  thousands 
of  preparatory  steps  have  sometimes  to  be  taken  before  it  is 
reached.  Only  by  a  very  gradual  transition  could  the  geography 



of  Palestine  be  brought  out  from  the  thick  clouds  of  darkness 
which  have  so  long  rested  upon  its  records  and  its  sources :  it 
was  a  country  unknown  to  those  outside  of  it,  even  in  the  re¬ 
motest  periods  of  history  :  even  its  nearest  neighbours,  even  the 
most  accomplished  nations  of  antiquity,  knew  little  or  nothing 
about  it.  Palestine  was  from  the  very  outset  a  land  set  apart, 
as  Israel  was  a  people  set  apart ;  and  for  twTo  thousand  years 
it  remained  so.  No  great  highway  led  through  it  from  nation 
to  nation ;  all  went  by  it,  over  the  roads  which  skirted  it 
without  traversing  it,  and  which  all  found  their  type  in  the 
sea-line  which  ran  from  the  harbours  of  the  ancient  Phoenician 
cities  to  Egypt,  along  a  shore  which  was  almost  devoid  of 
havens.  The  adoption  of  the  theocracy  of  Jehovah  prevented' 
all  the  other  nations  of  antiquity  from  forming  any  ties  of 
alliance  with  a  people  so  separated  from  them  by  geographical 
conditions,  and  by  mercantile,  political,  and  religious  opinions  : 
the  theocratic  idea  formed  a  perfect  cordon  around  Canaan, 
and  effectually  separated  all  other  nations  from  the  chosen 
people  which  inhabited  it. 

Palestine,  considered  in  its  connection  with  the  whole  of 
Syria,  extends  from  the  Isthmus  of  Suez  and  the  Sinai  Penin¬ 
sula  at  the  south,  northward  to  the  middle  terrace  land  of  the 
Euphrates,  where  that  river  breaks  madly  through  the  southern 
branch  of  the  Syrian  Taurus. 

Syria  is  bounded  by  a  great  sea  of  sand  on  the  east,  as  by  a 
great  sea  of  water  on  the  west :  it  is  separated,  therefore,  alike 
from  the  Orient  and  Occident,  and  set  in  a  place  of  isolation. 
Had  it  been  longer  than  it  is,  and  narrower  than  it  is,  it  must 
have  been  a  mere  link  between  the  Armenian  highlands  of  the 
Taurus  and  Egypt,  and  the  whole  course  of  its  history  must 
have  been  radically  different  from  what  it  has  been  :  there 
must  have  been  a  free  flowing  in  of  the  comparatively  rude  life 
of  the  former,  and  with  this  a  ready  entrance  of  Egyptian 
culture,  both  of  which  would  have  met  and  coalesced  in  a  third 
and  new  type  of  civilisation.  The  geographical  situation  and 
relations  of  Palestine  conditioned  its  history  from  the  very  first, 
and  appointed  it  to  be  a  bridge  arching  across  a  double  sea  of 
desert  sands,  and  of  waters  which  the  want  of  harbours  made 
useless  to  it :  it  connected  the  Euphrates  with  the  Nile,  that 
the  nation  which  God  had  selected  while  its  representative  was 



an  aged  Chaldee  chieftain  might  pass  safely  to  Egypt  and 
thence  back  to  the  place  which  He  had  appointed  for  its 
possession,  thenceforth  to  be  isolated  from  the  world,  and 
unimperilled  by  it.  No  other  country  of  the  ancient  world 
lay  as  Palestine,  the  southern  half  of  Syria,  did  in  this 
regard  :  the  northern  portion,  Soristan,  was  far  less  advan¬ 
tageously  situated ;  lying  on  the  great  highway  from  Babylon 
and  the  Euphrates,  it  was  early  made  a  prey  to  the  mighty 
armies  of  the  East.  Palestine  lay  in  the  same  pathway,  and 
yet  she  was  spared,  and  for  centuries  no  enemy  came  near  her. 
Surrounded  by  the  six  great  nations  of  antiquity,  the  splendour 
of  whose  culture  is  yet  a  marvel  to  the  world — the  Babylonians, 
the  Assyrians,  the  Medes,  the  Persians,  the  Phoenicians,  and 
the  Egyptians — and  kept  apart  from  them  all,  it  was  able  to 
develop  its  monotheistic  religion,  to  establish  its  own  special 
polity,  to  create  an  entirely  antagonistic  system  of  national 
economy,  and  to  arrive  at  perfect  independence.  There  was 
no  country  so  situated  in  relation  to  three  great  continents  and 
five  great  bodies  of  water  ;  so  that  when  the  fulness  of  time  had 
come,  there  was  no  delay  in  sending  the  gospel  to  the  very  ends 
of  the  earth.  May  we  not  see  in  such  a  wonderful  display  of 
adaptive  conditions,  which  have  exerted  a  decisive  effect  on  the 
whole  course  of  history,  and  on  the  destinies  of  millions,  more 
than  the  work  of  a  mere  random  chance,  more  than  the  arbi¬ 
trary  upheaving  of  the  ground,  the  hollowing  out  of  valleys 
and  gorges  at  another  place,  and  the  letting  in  the  waters  of 
the  ocean  to  form  an  arm  of  the  sea  at  still  another  ?  When 
we  arrive  at  a  point  of  view  where  we  command  at  a  glance 
the  whole  course  of  history,  and  see  great  causes  work  out  great 
effects — effects  which  work  as  broadly  as  they  work  deeply — 
may  we  not  recognise  the  working  of  a  Divine  Mind  above  it 
all,  controlling  the  issue  as  well  as  forming  the  plan ;  and  not 
alone  in  the  past — having  done  all  His  task  and  resting  thereafter 
— -but  still  carrying  on  His  work  and  perfecting  it  ?  Is  it  possible 
that  claims  can  be  made  in  the  name  of  science  to  a  profound 
study  of  the  earth,  when  its  very  organic  character  is  over¬ 
looked,  when  it  is  supposed  to  be  a  dead  inert  mass,  and  when 
it  is  compared  with  any  of  those  bodies  which  we  call  inorganic, 
and  which  we  invest  with  no  life  or  being,  and  cast  out  from 
the  list  of  organized  things  ?  In  a  hundred  places,  which  have 



exerted  an  evident  influence  on  the  course  of  history,  a  deeper 
study  can  detect  what  I  call  the  earth-organism,  meaning 
thereby  a  certain  subtle  but  real  organic  power,  which  the  earth 
puts  forth  and  gives  to  its  inhabitants,  not  to  be  confounded, 
however,  with  any  life  of  the  globe  which  pantheism  may 
claim.  And  even  in  those  places  where  no  living  connection 
is  yet  traceable  between  the  country  and  the  man,  where  the 
earth  seems  all  thrown  in  hap-hazard  forms, — sea,  and  gulf, 
and  lake,  and  mountain,  and  plain,  and  desert, — having  no 
pre-arranged  harmony  of  design  and  ultimate  end  as  a  home 
for  man  and  as  a  field  for  history,  it  will  be  found  in  the  end 
that  even  there  God’s  plans  were  laid  and  His  work  was  in 
execution  no  less  fully  and  manifestly  than  in  those  places 
which  we  call  the  classic  ground  of  history. 

Palestine’s  peculiar  position  in  relation  to  the  rest  of  the 
world  was  very  early  apparent.  Surrounded  by  populous, 
wealthy,  and  powerful  nations,  it  and  its  capital  remained  in 
their  centre  (see  Ezek.  xxxviii.  12,  in  umbilico  terra ?,  accord¬ 
ing  to  the  LXX.  quoted  in  Jerome),  but  untouched  by  their 
traffic,  and  made  inaccessible  by  desert  sands  and  by  seas, — 
kept  secure  by  crags,  and  gorges,  and  mountains, — a  country 
without  great  natural  charms,  without  wealth,  and  presenting 
few  inducements  to  the  rapacity  of  outlying  nations.  Thus  in 
a  truly  independent  way,  in  the  undisturbed  cultivation  of  its 
rough  and  hard  but  richly  remunerative  soil,  and  un attracted 
to  foreign  fields  by  open  roadsteads  and  favouring  seas,  it 
could  develop  fully  the  old  patriarchal  system,  and  fulfil  the 
whole  expectations  concerning  the  people  Israel.  This  it  could 
accomplish  by  reason  of  its  isolation,  the  faith  of  its  people 
being  kept  pure  from  the  superstitions  which  were  accepted  by 
the  surrounding  nations.  And  this  order  of  things  went  on  for 
century  after  century,  till  the  time  came  for  the  special  mission 
of  the  Hebrew  people  to  terminate,  and  for  their  land  to  become 
the  temporal  home  of  a  single  nation,  but  the  spiritual  home  of 
all.  When  the  fulfilling  of  the  law  had  come,  and  the  outer 
bounds  of  the  country  had  been  broken  through  and  the  enemy 
had  pressed  in,  the  roads  were  opened  at  once  for  the  dissemi¬ 
nation  of  the  gospel  all  over  the  world ;  and  the  very  destruc¬ 
tion  of  the  Jewish  capital,  and  the  scattering  of  that  nation, 
which  occurred  simultaneously  with  the  fulfilling  of  the  law  in 



the  coming  of  the  Saviour,  were  made  means  to  the  same 
wonderful  end. 

This  union  of  amazing  contrasts,  perfect  isolation  and  inde¬ 
pendence,  with  the  ability  to  go  out  from  this  isolation  and 
establish  commercial  relations  with  all  the  greatest  nations  of 
antiquity — the  Arabians,  Indians,  and  Egyptians,  as  well  as 
with  Syrians,  Armenians,  Greeks,  and  Homans — is  the  most 
striking  feature  in  the  country  destined  to  be  the  scene  of 
the  history  of  the  chosen  people. 

It  is  also  an  observable  fact,  and  one  which,  even  if  it  does 
not  spring  from  the  same  physical  conditions,  is  nevertheless 
closely  connected  with  them,  that  the  three  great  religions 
which  emanated  from  that  part  of  the  earth — Judaism,  Christi¬ 
anity,  and  Islamism — have  proved  themselves  the  ones  for  the 
reception  of  which  men  generally  are  most  susceptible,  and 
which  have  the  greatest  possibility  of  endurance.  And  these 
religions  could  only  have  gone  out  with  the  success  which  they 
have  commanded,  from  a  central  region :  had  they  sprung  up 
in  a  country  on  one  side,  they  would  not  have  brought  the  dis¬ 
trict  at  the  centre  into  speedy  subjection.  Even  the  realm  of 
spiritual  ideas  is  subject,  therefore,  to  geographical  conditions ; 
but  it  is  none  the  less  a  free  realm  notwithstanding :  for  that 
law  of  the  Spirit,  i.e.  of  God,  although  it  is  strong,  and  brings 
even  the  thoughts  of  men  into  subjection  to  it,  yet  rules  in  ac¬ 
cordance  with  the  truest  and  most  certified  principles  of  human 

Looking  now  at  Palestine  more  in  detail,  we  discover  that 
its  barriers  are  very  sharply  defined  on  the  west,  the  south,  and 
the  east,  but  that  at  the  north  it  stretches  away  into  Syria 
without  a  specially  marked  boundary  line.  Still,  sharp  mathe¬ 
matical  lines  are  to  be  found  nowhere  in  a  scientific  use  of 
geography :  it  is  connections  rather  than  demarcations  with 
which  we  have  to  do ;  dependence  rather  than  independence;  the 
mutual  action  and  reaction  of  nations  upon  each  other,  rather 
than  their  isolated  development.  Just  as  little  as  any  one  limb 
of  an  animal  organism  can  be  detached  from  the  living  whole  of 
which  it  forms  a  part,  and  studied  by  itself  and  independently  of 
its  relations,  can  any  part  of  the  world  be  viewed  by  itself,  and 
be  exhaustively  studied.  This  has  been  too  much  the  case  with 
the  writers  of  our  ordinary  geographical  text-books;  and  the 



lands  which  should  have  been  exhibited  in  their  living  relations, 
have  been  presented  as  mere  dead  masses  of  rock  and  soil.  We 
see,  on  the  other  hand,  in  every  country,  only  a  limb  whose 
relations  to  the  organic  body  must  be  sedulously  traced,  and 
whose  special  functions  cannot  be  understood  till  they  are 
studied,  not  in  the  imperfect  light  which  a  mere  fragment 
yields,  but  in  the  perfect  light  which  the  whole  throws  upon 
every  constituent  part. 

The  principal  character  of  Syria,  of  which  Palestine  forms 
only  the  south-western  portion,  is  determined  mainly  by  the 
direction  of  its  mountain  ranges :  these,  whether  assuming  the 

/  O 

larger  form  or  the  smaller  one  of  broad-backed  hills,  traverse 
the  whole  country  in  northerly  and  southerly  lines.  The  Jordan 
and  the  Orontes  run  along  the  main  valleys  in  just  contrary 
directions — the  former  towards  the  greatest  southerly,  and  the 
latter  towards  the  greatest  northerly  depression.  These  lines 
serve  to  indicate  the  parallelism  which  obtains  between  the 
mountain  ranges,  the  valleys,  and  the  coast  line  of  Syria.  Three 
different  kinds  of  territory  are  the  result — three  meridianal 
belts  traceable  all  the  way  from  the  sea-shore  to  the  eastern 

East  of  these  two  main  streams  lies  the  desert,  a  plateau 
ranging  from  1200  to  2000  feet  in  height,  and  stretching  away 
eastward  in  unbroken  uniformity ;  at  the  west  is  the  coast,  a 
belt  varying  in  breadth ;  and  between  the  two,  the  country 
proper,  a  broad  mountain  land,  in  elevation  ranging  from  a  very 
moderate  altitude  to  the  alpine  proportions  of  Hermon,  which 
towers  9000  feet  above  the  sea. 

The  belt  which  runs  along  the  eastern  frontier  from  north 
to  south,  traversing  all  Syria  from  the  extreme  limits  of  the 
Taurus  to  the  Sinai  desert,  is  not  remarkable  for  any  marked 
grandeur  in  its  physical  features,  and  is  tolerably  uniform  in 
its  characteristics,  being  made  up  to  a  considerable  extent  of  a 
broad  plateau  of  steppe  land,  rock  and  sand  and  debris  being 
freely  intermingled  in  its  formation,  and  forming  an  immeasur¬ 
able  succession  of  high  plains,  whose  effect  is  manifest  in  the 
course  of  the  Euphrates,  which  has  been  driven  to  the  eastward 
thereby,  and  removed  from  the  immediate  neighbourhood  of  the 
Mediterranean  Sea.  Dotted  only  sparsely  with  places  of  fertility, 
oasis-like,  it  has  always  been  the  home  of  wild,  nomadic  Beduin 



races,  who,  like  Israel  in  its  shepherd  days,  gain  their  sub¬ 
sistence  by  a  restless  wandering.  Lying  for  the  most  part  from 
one  to  two  thousand  feet  above  the  sea,  there  are  found  here, 
in  addition  to  the  dry  continental  climate  of  the  neighbouring 
Heja,  a  bright  sky,  hot  summers,  severe  winters,  and  cutting 
winds,  especially  from  the  east  and  north-east.  Dryness,  a  scanty 
supply  of  trees  and  of  springs,  are  the  natural  result  of  these 
physical  conditions,  as  we  know  is  the  case  along  the  whole 
southern  frontier  of  Palestine.  Yet  there  are  certain  portions 
of  this  tract  which  are  very  much  favoured  by  their  supply  of 
water.  For  here  is  the  great  route  for  caravans  on  their  way 
from  the  Euphrates  to  Arabia,  passing  from  Zeugma,  near  el-Bir 
and  Kumkala,  southward  via  Aleppo,  Damascus,  el-Belka,  on 
the  east  side  of  the  Jordan  and  the  Dead  Sea  to  Medina  and 
Mecca.  All  along  the  way  there  is  a  succession  of  oases,  giving 
ample  supplies  of  water  for  the  needs  of  pilgrims,  not  lying  in 
the  direct  line  of  travel,  however,  but  causing  it  to  turn  and 
twist  so  as  to  embrace  in  its  course  these  natural  halting-places. 
The  pilgrimage  from  Aleppo  to  Medina  usually  occupies  forty- 
eight  days,  of  which  the  half  are  usually  consumed  in  Syria,  the 
entire  distance  being  what  is  embraced  between  31°  and  36J° 
N.  lat.,  or  about  364  miles.  If  we  trace  upon  the  map  the  chief 
halting-places  of  these  pilgrims,  we  gain  the  clearest  possible 
conception  of  their  route. 

From  the  Euphrates  the  caravans  require  two  days  to  bring 
them  to  Aleppo,  lying  1200  feet  above  the  sea,1  and  at  36°  12' 
N.  lat. ;  thence  to  Homs  (Emesa),  on  el-Aasi  (the  Orontes),  it 
is  a  six  days’  march.  Thence  to  Damascus,  33°  32'  28"  N.  lat., 
and  at  an  altitude  of  over  two  thousand  feet  above  the  sea,  it 
requires  four  days.  From  that  point  it  is  a  nine  days’  march 
to  Belka,  at  the  north-eastern  extremity  of  the  Dead  Sea ;  and 
the  last  stage  is  thence  to  the  Kalaat  el  Hassa  or  el  Hossa,  near 
Shehak,  31°  N.  lat.,  at  the  southern  extremity  of  the  Dead  Sea. 
From  that  point  the  route  lies  for  twenty-four  days  through 
Arabian  soil,  with  the  exception  of  the  first  three  or  four, 
which  take  the  pilgrims  over  Kalaat,  Aeneze,  Maan,  eastward 
from  Petra  to  the  Syrian  Akaba,  lying  east  of  Jebal  and  Jebel 
Shera  (Seir),  through  the  intermediate  territory  of  the  ancient 
Syria  Sobal,  before  they  leave  the  country  at  the  Akaba  esli 

1  Erdk.  x.  955. 


Sliamie  or  el  Sham,  and,  crossing  the  rocky  boundary,  fairly 
enter  the  true  Heja. 

The  second  belt,  running  northward  and  southward — the 
maritime  one  at  the  west,  the  sea-coast  of  Syria — is  of  very 
moderate  breadth,  never  over  a  few  miles  wide,  and  often 
reduced  to  a  mere  strip  along  the  shore  by  the  invasion  of  the 
rocky  hills ;  never  uniform  for  any  considerable  way,  but  sub¬ 
ject  to  great  diversities  of  form ;  extending  from  Gaza  along 
the  coast  of  Palestine,  embracing  Sephala  and  the  celebrated 
plain  of  Sharon,  as  far  as  Carmel.  Up  to  that  point  it  has  not 
been  insignificant  in  its  breadth ;  but  after  leaving  Carmel  it 
begins  to  narrow,  sometimes  being  reduced  to  a  mere  fringe 
between  the  rocky  precipices  and  the  sea,  as  we  find  frequently 
to  be  the  case  in  northern  Soristan. 

This  maritime  belt  has  therefore  a  certain  analogy  in  its 
formation  with  the  Arabian  Tehama,  which  is  subject  in  a 
measure  to  African  influence,  although  it  skirts  the  shore  of  the 
Red  Sea.  Still,  as  a  western  appendage  of  the  Syrian  mountain 
range,  it  is  more  abundantly  watered,  and  is  more  fertile :  by 
reason  of  its  more  northerly  situation,  it  is  less  parched  by  the 
sun ;  by  virtue  of  its  relation  to  the  Mediterranean,  it  enjoys 
mild,  moist  sea  winds,  and  a  denser  foliage  in  consequence;  and 
from  the  great  mountain  chain  in  the  background,  it  has  more 
grateful  land  winds,  and  greater  diversity  in  the  seasons.  There 
was,  besides,  in  the  providence  of  God,  a  great  advantage  in  the 
want  of  good  harbours,  in  the  unbroken  sea-line  which  served 
as  a  direct  guide  to  coasters,  but  which  offered  no  inducements 
to  them  to  tarry.  This  feature  characterized  the  southern  third 
of  the  entire  Syrian  shore,  that  of  Palestine,  and  was  one  of 
the  appointed  means  of  keeping  the  people  of  that  land  true  to 
their  destiny,  as  a  people  “set  apart;”  while  the  middle  third, 
that  which  belonged  to  Phoenicia,  was  abundantly  provided  not 
only  with  excellent  harbours,  but  with  large  rivers,  and  with  all 
the  appliances  wThich  made  them  the  first  commercial  nation 
of  the  globe,  not  only  chronologically,  but  in  the  extent  of  their 
resources.  This  completed  the  contrast  between  the  Phoeni¬ 
cians  and  Israel,  allowing  them  to  live  side  by  side,  and  yet  in 
perfect  amity. 

The  third  longitudinal  belt,  the  one  lying  intermediate 
between  the  two  already  specified,  belongs  in  like  manner  to 



all  Syria,  but  is  so  variously  modified,  that  these  modifications 
must  have  exerted  a  very  powerful  influence  upon  the  charac¬ 
ter  of  the  people  inhabiting  it.  What  a  marked  diversity 
between  the  eastern  and  the  western  sides  ! — the  gradual 
terrace-like  ascent  from  the  wooded  and  deeply  green  plains  by 
the  sea,  step  after  step  to  the  high,  rounded,  grassy  hill  pastures 
of  the  south,  or  to  the  steep,  rocky,  alpine  mountains  of  the 
centre,  as  well  as  those  more  to  the  north ;  and,  on  the  con¬ 
trary,  towards  the  desert  frontier  at  the  east,  the  abrupt  naked 
descent  into  the  long  valley  of  the  upper  Orontes,  and  the  yet 
more  wall-like  valley  of  the  Jordan,  scarcely  presenting  a  trace 
of  analogy  to  the  features  of  the  western  side  of  this  great 
mountain  belt.  The  northward  and  the  southward  flow  of 
these  two  rivers  is  not  more  in  contrast  in  respect  to  direc¬ 
tion,  than  it  is  in  all  the  natural  types  which  are  found  there  ; 
and  this  despite  the  fact  that  they  are  cradled  in  almost  the 
same  spring.  The  Orontes  is  not  a  marked  river  in  the  history 
of  the  human  race :  the  Jordan,  on  the  contrary,  more  favoured 
by  nature  with  tributary  lakes,  and  with  richer  and  rarer  gifts, 
has  attained  to  a  remarkable  place  in  its  influence  on  the  des¬ 
tinies  of  man.  The  Jordan  is  the  leading  river  of  the  land. 
As  in  the  oriental  mode  of  speech  a  spring  is  called  the  u  eye” 
of  the  landscape,  so  a  river  like  the  Jordan,  fed  by  many 
springs,  may  be  called  the  main  artery  of  the  land,  quickening 
all  life  wherever  it  runs,  giving  occupation  to  all  settlers  upon 
it,  and  controlling  even  the  movements  of  those  who  settle,  by 
directing  them  to  the  most  fruitful  fields,  and  influencing 
vitally  all  commerce  and  all  civilisation.  Deriving  its  supplies 
of  water  from  the  snowy  summits  of  Hermon  and  Lebanon, 
fed  by  their  rains,  by  the  stores  which  pour  forth  from  the 
grottos  and  caves,  and  which  are  augmented  by  the  lakes 
through  which  the  Jordan  flows,  it  is  perennial  in  its  influence ; 
and  when  all  the  other  adjacent  streams  of  the  country  are 
dry  and  valueless,  the  sacred  stream  flows  on,  still  continuing 
its  bounty.  With  perfect  naturalness,  therefore,  all  Palestine 
looks  up  to  those  beautiful  snow-crowned  heights,  whence  all  the 
blessings  of  the  land  flow  down  the  J ordan  vale ;  and  plough¬ 
man  and  shepherd,  singer  and  prophet,  theology  and  poetry, 
catch  thence  their  fairest  symbols  and  their  aptest  similes.  The 
depression  of  the  J  ordan  valley  is  the  most  signal  feature  in 



tlie  geography  of  Palestine,  and  confers  upon  the  whole  country 
what  is  most  eminently  characteristic  of  it.  For  the  Jordan  is 
a  river  wholly  unique :  there  is  no  other  like  it  on  the  whole 
face  of  the  earth ;  a  purely  inland  river,  having  no  embouchure 
at  the  sea,  and  closing  its  course  at  the  very  deepest  part  of 
the  Old  World,  and  far  below  the  level  of  the  ocean,  running 
parallel  with  the  neighbouring  coast,  and  yet  never  approach¬ 
ing  it  from  source  to  mouth.  Without  the  adjacent  sea  this 
river  could  not  have  an  existence :  it  as  well  as  the  Orontes 
would  totally  disappear ;  and  the  two  valleys  combined,  with 
the  exception  of  that  formed  by  the  lower  Orontes  after  it  turns 
abruptly  towards  the  sea  at  Antioch,  would  constitute  one 
unbroken  cleft  from  the  far  north  of  Syria  to  the  Fed  Sea 
itself.  But  now  the  Jordan,  gathering  its  waters  from  snowy 
mountain-tops,  and  from  permanent  subterranean  enclosures, 
flows  over  a  succession  of  gradual  terraces  which  are  only 
partially  arid,  and  through  a  succession  of  lake  basins  broken 
through  and  hollowed  out  of  the  solid  rock :  nowhere  a  true 
river  system,  but  of  very  heterogeneous  character ;  having  no 
tributary  streams,  but  rolling  rapidly  here  and  quickly  there, 
traversing  a  mere  cleft  riven  through  the  whole  length  of 

The  long  mountain  range  running  from  north  to  south,  and 
whose  eastern  base  is  washed  by  the  rivers  just  mentioned, 
consists  of  a  number  of  parallel  ridges  of  peaks  with  their 
adjacent  spurs,  containing  some  lofty  summits  and  some  high 
rocky  swells,  with  valleys  lying  between,  all  of  which  are  at  a 
considerable  elevation  above  the  sea  ;  the  Val  Bekaa,  in  which 
Baalbec  is  situated,  between  Lebanon  and  Anti-Lebanon,  being 
3000  feet  above  the  ocean  level.  There  is  no  great  valley 
crossing  these  ridges  eastward  and  westward  :  for  had  there 
been,  the  J ordan  would  not  have  lost  itself  in  a  small  inland 
sea,  but  would  have  broken  through  to  the  Mediterranean,  just 
as  the  Orontes  once  apparently  did  at  the  Mons  Casius  of  the 
ancients,  where  it  takes  a  sharp  western  turn  towards  the  sea. 
The  great  plateau  east  of  the  Jordan  valley  was  purposely 
intended  to  sink  at  the  north,  and  the  mountain  ranges  wTest  of 
the  Orontes  also,  preparatory  to  their  rising  again  in  the  great 
Aman  and  Taurus  chains,  in  order  to  effect  the  complete  isola¬ 
tion  of  northern  Soristan,  and  to  allow  a  free  passage  for  all 



the  nations  of  Hither  Asia  to  go  from  the  Euphrates  to  the 
Mediterranean.  Had  there  been  a  transverse  valley  across 
Palestine,  it  would  have  been  turned  to  large  account  for  this 
purpose,  and  the  whole  history  of  the  country  would  have  been 
different  from  what  it  has  been. 

And  not  only  is  there  wanting  a  deep  central  valley  from 
the  east  to  the  west  of  Palestine,  but  there  are  also  wanting 
any  that  lie  high,  any  which  may  serve  approximately  for  the 
purposes  of  travel  or  traffic.  All  the  lines  run  from  north  to 
south,  and  there  are  almost  no  clefts  which  allow  free  passage 
between  these  lateral  lines  :  the  few  insignificant  ones  which 
do  thus  bridge  the  hill  and  mountain  chains  have  been  con¬ 
verted  into  places  of  great  local  importance.  In  the  middle 
third  of  Syria  (reckoning  Palestine  as  the  southern),  the  Leba¬ 
non  range  has  proved  an  equally  effectual  barrier :  it  has  but 
a  single  pass  from  Damascus  to  the  Mediterranean ;  and  the 
people  of  the  whole  region  have  made  little  progress,  and  trans¬ 
mit  faithfully  from  generation  to  generation  the  modes  and 
customs  and  opinions  of  their  remote  ancestors.  The  towering 
mountains,  with  their  difficult  passes,  so  limited  the  possibilities 
of  civilisation  there,  that  it  was  nearly  all  centred  in  Damascus 
at  the  east,  and  in  the  Phoenician  cities  on  the  seaboard  ;  while 
on  the  rolling  and  more  open  and  accessible  hills  of  Palestine, 
men  could  labour  more  easily,  and  communicate  with  each 
other  more  readily ;  and  the  result  was  the  building  of  the 
numerous  cities  of  the  south — Hebron,  Sichem,  Samaria,  Jeru¬ 
salem,  Nazareth,  Safed,  and  others.  Middle  Syria  can  show 
no  parallel  to  this  ;  as  little  can  northern  Syria  ;  and  the 
civilisation  of  those  regions  was  compelled  to  centre  at  Damas¬ 
cus,  Aleppo,  and  Hamath,  in  consequence  of  their  relation  to 
the  Euphrates. 

Although  in  the  physical  configuration  of  Syria,  as  I  have 
thus  far  pictured  it,  a  great  share  of  the  phenomena  with  which 
history  has  to  deal  may  find  its  key,  still  there  are  other  condi¬ 
tions,  of  which  I  must  speak,  which  have  also  exerted  a  large 
influence.  They  are  hypsometrieal  in  their  character :  they 
deal  with  lines  which  do  not  run  northward  and  southward,  like 
those  already  studied,  but  eastward  and  westward,  and  which 
determine  much  of  the  hydrography  of  Syria. 

I  allude  to  the  colossal  piling  up  within  the  middle  third  of 


the  country,  of  the  knotted  masses  which  compose  the  Lebanon. 
The  first  result  of  this  feature  is  the  contrasted  and  divergent 
valleys  of  the  Orontes  and  of  the  Jordan,  each  of  them  from 
sixty  to  seventy  hours  long  (adopting  the  oriental  method  of 
measuring  such  distances)  ;  and  the  next  is  the  formation  of 
those  abundant  Phoenician  streams  which  flow  into  the  Mediter¬ 
ranean,  as  well  as  those  which  water  the  plateau  of  Damascus. 
Between  the  head  waters  of  the  two  great  Syrian  rivers 
tower  the  two  parallel  ranges  of  the  Lebanon  (33°  to  34-J°  N. 
lat.),  dominating  over  all  the  landscape,  branching  out  in  all 
directions,  and  rising  in  some  of  their  peaks  to  the  height 
of  9000  feet.  Among  these  colossal  mountains  we  are  not 
restricted  longer  to  the  mere  valleys  which  run  north  and  south, 
such  as  we  have  only  found  elsewhere  ;  but  here  are  transverse 
ravines  as  well,  through  which  the  abundant  waters  of  Lebanon 
flow  out  in  all  directions.  Thus  the  Barada,  which  with  its 
tributaries  flows  directly  from  the  heights  of  Anti-Lebanon  to 
the  plateau  at  the  eastern  base,  gives  to  Damascus  its  beautiful 
girdle  of  gardens,  and  then,  having  no  outlet  to  the  Mediter¬ 
ranean,  disappears  in  the  Bahr  el  Merdj,  like  the  Jordan  in 
the  Dead  Sea. 

On  the  western  declivities  there  are  many  deep  cross  val¬ 
leys  also  breaking  through,  beginning  at  Nalir  Kasmieh  (the 
Leontes)  at  the  south,  coming  up  by  Sur  (Tyre),  parting  the 
knotted  group  of  the  Lebanon,  and  allowing  for  a  great  part 
of  the  year  the  free  passage  of  the  perennial  mountain  streams 
which  dash  grandly  down,  and  enter  the  sea  upon  the  Phoenician 
coast;  a  coast  so  richly  supplied  with  harbours,  and  so  favoured 
with  the  abundant  irrigation  of  these  numerous  streams,  and 
so  securely  protected  from  invasion  on  the  land  side  by  the 
wild  masses  of  rock  which  advance  almost  to  the  sea-side,  and 
so  favoured  by  winds  and  currents  and  all  the  accessories  of 
navigation,  that  from  the  earliest  times  every  natural  haven 
has  witnessed  the  growth  of  a  city  upon  it ;  and  from  that  coast 
men  were  attracted  in  the  very  infancy  of  the  world  to  push 
out  and  explore  other  regions,  and  build  up  a  commerce  with 
other  and  ruder  nations. 

What  a  contrast  this  presents  to  the  lower  coast  of  Syria, 
where  there  is  to  be  found  scarcely  a  single  mountain  stream, 
scarcely  a  brook  even,  and  hardly  a  single  harbour  ;  with 

VOL.  II.  B 




almost  the  single  exception  of  the  Kishon  (Keisun),  north  of 
Mount  Carmel,  embouching  in  the  Bay  of  Acre !  Not  in  the 
magnitude  of  the  streams  of  Palestine  lies  their  importance, 
for  they  are  all  very  small,  none  of  them  longer  than  men 
march  in  two  or  three  clays ;  not  in  their  navigability,  for  they 
are  all  inaccessible  to  even  the  lighter  kinds  of  shipping ;  but  in 
their  terrace-formed  valleys,  and  in  the  deltas  and  the  peculiar 
line  of  plains  along  the  shore  to  which  their  dashing  waters, 
carrying  down  the  finely  crumbled  detritus  of  the  hills,  give 
rise.  There  was  no  lack  of  fertile  plains  along  the  seaboard 
of  Palestine,  and  hence  the  industry  of  the  early  inhabitants 
won  for  it  the  fame  of  being  a  land  flowing  with  oil,  milk,  and 
honey ;  and  the  Canaanitic  agriculture,  which  converted  the 
terraces  on  every  liill-side  into  smiling  gardens,  was  cited  as 
the  model  of  the  whole  Levant  and  southern  Europe.  The 
great  difference  between  Phoenicia  and  Palestine  was  this,  that 
the  latter  country  retained  within  itself  all  the  profitable  land 
which  its  river-courses  formed,  and  was  able  to  avail  itself  of 
it.  But  the  former  country  lost  it  in  great  measure  ;  the  dashing 
mountain  streams  swept  the  fine  particles  of  alluvium  out  to 
sea,  and  allowed  the  formation  of  no  rich  plains  along  the 
coast.  This  also  tended  to  drive  the  people  to  the  pursuits  of 
navigation  and  commerce. 

This  great  mountain  chain  of  Lebanon,  then,  struggling 
upwards  towards  the  line  of  perpetual  snow,  but  hardly  any¬ 
where  reaching  it,  yet  gathering  each  winter  enough  of  snow 
and  ice  to  serve  as  a  sufficient  supply  for  the  summer  to  come, 
is  what  proves  so  rich  and  fruitful  a  blessing  to  southern  and 
central  Syria.  Its  loftiest  summits  are  found,  too,  at  the 
southern  extremity  of  the  chain ;  and  this  especially  favours 
Palestine.  The  countries  which  cluster  around  the  base  of 
Lebanon  are  supplied  with  constant  moisture,  while  those  at  a 
distance  from  it,  the  gre^t  Syrian  plains,  are  scantily  watered. 
The  Holy  Land  may  be  considered  as  a  great  oasis  in  the 
desert.  The  entire  domain  of  Egypt,  Arabia,  and  Assyria  is 
only  scantily  dotted  with  patches  of  verdure,  or  lined  with  it 
along  the  rivers’  sides ;  but  the  Lebanon  once  blessed  all  Pales¬ 
tine,  and  covered  it  with  streams. 

Syria  is  divided,  as  we  now  see,  not  only  into  the  three  long 
belts  which  follow  the  direction  of  the  meridian,  the  eastern  or 



continental,  the  western  or  maritime,  and  the  central  or  the 
mountainous,  but  it  is  also  subdivided  into  southern,  central, 
and  northern  Syria  by  other  characteristics.  The  central 
portion  is  the  province  covered  by  the  Lebanon,  which  sepa¬ 
rates  as  a  mighty  barrier  the  northern  from  the  southern,  and 
whose  branches  are  so  far  inferior  to  it  in  size,  that  they  can 
lay  no  claim  to  analogy  in  respect  of  altitude,  but  merely  in 
respect  of  general  configuration  and  physical  character. 

Without  the  Lebanon,  Syria  would  not  have  differed  essen¬ 
tially  from  Persia  or  Arabia,  and  would  have  been  utterly 
unable  to  play  that  part  in  history  which  has  been  accorded  to 
her.  But  with  the  towering  Lebanon  to  yield  supplies  of 
moisture,  Damascus  could  become  not  merely  the  delightful 
city  of  gardens  which  she  has  always  been,  but  one  of  the  most 
ancient  homes  of  culture  on  the  earth.  The  deeply  indented 
shore  on  the  west,  with  its  rivers,  and  the  harbours  which  were 
formed  at  their  rocky  mouths,  could  become  the  home  of  a  great 
commercial  people,  and  an  outlet  for  all  the  products  of  the 
busy  East.  The  northern  portion,  Soristan,  the  country  which 
served  as  the  track  of  travellers  on  their  way  from  the  most 
western  bending  of  the  Euphrates  to  the  turning  of  the  Orontes 
at  Antioch,  was  the  most  meagrely  supplied  of  all,  and  yet  it 
was  not  unsupplied  with  the  waters  of  the  Lebanon  ;  while  the 
southern  third,  Canaan,  the  later  Palestine,  was  richly  watered 
from  Hermon  down — was  kept  fruitful  by  the  influence  of  its 
leading  river — was  made  conscious  of  its  own  wealth,  its  own 
independence  of  the  rest  of  the  world,  its  own  security :  and  so 
cherishing  its  own  resources,  and  adding  to  them,  it  went  on  in 
its  chosen  path  of  inward  growth,  without  foreign  wars,  and 
without  any  contact  with  the  world  without,  until  at  last  the 
time  arrived  when  it  too  was  made  a  prey,  and  was  tossed  up 
and  down  in  the  flooding  and  ebbing  of  battle.  But  that  this 
could  happen  at  all  was  indicated  by  the  physical  structure  of 
the  country,  and  by  the  manner  of  its  connection  through 
Coelo-Syria  with  Soristan.  And  yet  despite  this,  and  despite 
all  the  analogies  which  bind  the  southern  third  of  the  country 
to  the  northern  third,  there  is  enough  left  to  bring  Palestine 
out  into  amazing  prominence  as  a  country  providentially  ap¬ 
pointed  as  the  home  of  a  people  who  were  to  be  u  set  apart.” 

Both  the  northern  and  the  southern  sections  of  Palestine 



are  effectually  shut  off  from  the  central  or  the  Lebanon  pro¬ 
vince  ;  Palestine  proper,  or  the  land  of  the  Jordan,  is  essen¬ 
tially  divorced  from  Soristan,  or  the  land  of  the  Orontes. 
The  latter  river  rises  in  the  high  Lebanon  range,  but  it 
very  soon  leaves  it,  or  flows  as  a  mere  neighbour  to  its  eastern 
base,  the  river  being  skirted  on  the  east  by  the  vast  Syrian 
plateau.  The  Jordan,  on  the  contrary,  plunges  down  at  once 
into  a  deep  ravine,  in  which  lies  its  entire  course  thereafter, 
its  eastern  margin  not  being  a  vast  plateau,  but  a  towering 
wall  of  rock,  precipice-like,  sometimes  rising  to  the  height  of 
thousands  of  feet,  and  running  back  from  the  river  in  the 
form  of  cool,  breezy  plains,  not  destitute  of  pasturage.  This 
difference  in  the  configuration  of  the  two  river  basins  made  a 
great  change  in  their  historical  influence ;  for  whereas  the 
Orontes,  open  on  the  east  to  the  free  advance  of  the  wandering 
races  who  came  westward  from  Hither  Asia,  presented  no 
obstacle,  the  Jordan  was  effectually  closed,  and  the  hordes 
of  the  Heja  menaced  it  in  vain.  The  destinies  of  Soristan 
were  consequently  most  intimately  connected  with  those  of 
Assyria  and  Mesopotamia  :  the  basin  of  the  lower  Orontes  was 
a  highway  for  nations — a  great  channel  for  commerce,  as  the 
history  of  Tadmor,  Palmyra,  Antioch,  and  Aleppo  shows — a 
connecting  link  between  the  East  and  the  West,  between  the 
Euphrates  and  Asia  Minor.  Assyrians,  Persians,  Parthians, 
Homans,  Greeks,  Seleucidians,  Saffanidians,  Mongolians,  and 
Turks,  pressed  into  the  land,  and  at  present  the  Turcomans 
hold  undisputed  possession  of  it :  wave  after  wave  swept  those 
away  who  had  for  a  little  season  possessed  it,  and  there  was  never 
time  when  any  nation  could  abide  there  long  enough  to  form  a 
history.  But  at  the  south,  and  along  the  Jordan  valley,  there 
never  was  any  commingling  of  races :  the  barrier  was  effectual, 
and  checked  all  invasion  until  that  of  the  Mohammedans.  The 
traffic  of  the  Israelites  under  Solomon,  in  the  Nabatlicean 
period,  as  well  as  that  of  the  patriarchs  with  Egypt,  was  not 
effected  through  the  channel  by  which  Joshua  entered  the 
land,  but  by  traversing  the  Sinaitic  desert.  More  temporary 
yet  were  the  transits  across  the  land  of  one  of  the  Pharaohs, 
Alexander,  and  the  Seleuckke ;  while  the  Homan  and  Byzan¬ 
tine  power  found  their  limit  outside  of  Palestine. 

The  greater  abundance  of  springs,  brooks,  rivers,  and  lakes, 



must  also  be  taken  into  account,  as  adding  very  much  to  the 
value  of  Palestine  as  the  permanent  home  of  a  nation ;  for  the 
great  lake  (Famieh  or  Bohaire),  found  on  some  modern  maps, 
between  Hama  and  Antioch,  and  near  Apomea,  must  be 
struck  out,  being  placed  there  only  by  hypothesis,  to  preserve  a 
supposed  analogy  between  that  district  and  that  at  the  south. 

A  third  difference  lies  in  the  method  and  skill  in  agri- 
culture  among  the  Hebrews,  who  followed  what  I  have  indi¬ 
cated  by  the  expression  terrace-culture, — a  method  still  in  vogue 
on  the  Phoenician  hills.  What  was  not  found  in  any  one 
of  the  three  divisions  of  Syria,  were  those  broad  fertile  plains, 
the  existence  of  which  is  essential  to  the  existence  of  any 
extremely  populous  country.  This  want  Phoenicia  could  supply 
by  means  of  its  large  foreign  commerce,  which  made  the  then 
known  world  a  granary ;  but  Palestine  and  Soristan  could  not 
supply  it.  Both  of  these  districts  were  removed  respectively  but 
a  few  days’  march  over  the  desert,  from  two  countries  which 
could  furnish  them  with  corn  in  times  of  great  scarcity :  Meso¬ 
potamia  to  the  latter,  Egypt  to  the  former.  What  an  influence 
such  a  dependence  gave  to  those  great  centres  of  civilisation,  is 
well  known  :  it  conferred  upon  them  their  empire  as  well  as 
their  culture,  and  caused  all  power,  and  wisdom,  and  luxury  to 
be  briefly  summed  up,  when  men  pronounced  the  names  of 
Memphis  and  Babylon. 




O  give  a  complete  catalogue  raisonnee  of  the  sources 
whence  our  knowledge  of  the  geography  of  Palestine 
is  drawn,  is  not  one  of  the  objects  which  I  have 
assigned  to  myself  in  the  task  on  which  I  am 
engaged.  Although  I  know  of  no  work  which  exhausts  the 
extraordinary  riches  of  this  field,  yet  there  is  an  admirable 
preparation  made,  in  view  of  this  end,  in  the  lists  of  authori¬ 
ties  given  by  Reland,  Pococke,  Meusel,  Bellermann,  Rosen- 
miiller,1  Berghaus,2  Hammer-Purgstall,3  and  more  especially  by 
yon  Raumer4  and  Robinson,5  which  last,  as  far  as  to  about  the 
end  of  the  fifteenth  century,  is  one  of  the  most  complete  and 
critically  perfect  that  we  possess.  Others  which  we  have  from 
the  English  and  the  French0  are  valuable. 

The  simple  task  remains  to  me,  to  refer  to  the  original 
authorities  to  that  extent  which  may  be  necessary  to  help  me 
to  exhibit  in  a  broad  and  general  way  the  manner  in  which  I 
propose  to  treat  the  geography  of  Palestine,  in  order  to  grasp  it 
completely,  and  to  bring  it  up  to  that  position  where  it  shall  be 
in  our  power  to  detect  and  eliminate  old  traditional  errors,  and 
to  discover  the  gaps  which  are  to  be  filled  up  in  the  course  of 

1  Rosenmiiller,  Handbuch  der  biblischen  AlterthumsJcunde ,  vol.  i.  1823, 
pp.  G-130  ;  ErJcenntnissquellen  der  biblischen  Alter thumsknnde. 

2  H.  Berghaus,  Memoir  zur  Karte  von  Syrien ,  Gotlia  1835,  pp.  1-21. 

3  Rev.  in  the  Wiener  Jahrbuchern ,  1836,  1839,  1843,  v.  74,  87,  and 

4  K.  v.  Raumer,  Paldstina ,  2d  ed.  1838,  pp.  2-19. 

6  E.  Robinson,  Bib.  Researches,  ii.  533-555. 

G  John  Kitto,  Palestine,  the  Bible  Hist,  of  the  Holy  Land,  Lond.  1848, 
pp.  iv.-xxiii. ;  Munk,  Palestine ,  Paris  1845,  pp.  654-658  ;  Sur  les  Voyayes 
de  la  Palestine . 




future  discovery.  A  condensed  historical  survey  of  the  course 
of  events  in  the  Holy  Land,  and  of  the  authors  who  have 
recorded  those  events,  will  be  the  most  satisfactory  means  of 
attaining  the  end  in  view. 


In  times  previous  to  the  advent  of  Christ,  Palestine  did  not 
draw  universal  attention  to  itself,  as  it  has  done  since  :  it 
remained  long  unknown  to  the  most  splendid  nations  of  anti¬ 
quity,  the  domain  of  a  nation  little  regarded,  little  understood. 
Nor  did  it  hold  this  obscure  position  except  in  accordance  with 
the  very  will  and  counsel  of  God.  Because  no  commerce  knit 
its  people  to  other  nations,  and  because  no  common  religious 
opinions  bound  them  to  the  rest  of  mankind,  their  country 
remained  intact,  and  was  only  invaded  in  times  of  exceptional 
disaster.  As  the  land  of  Canaan,  it  was  utterly  unknown  to 
the  world  :  as  that  of  the  children  of  Israel,  it  first  comes  into 
note  in  the  book  of  Joshua,  during  the  w’ars  which  disturbed  it 
at  the  time  of  its  conquest,  and  its  division  among  the  twelve 
tribes.  The  Pharaohs  had  some  knowledge  of  the  people  who 
dwelt  in  Canaan,  but  they  never  entered  the  land.  Only 
Pharaoh  Necho,  in  his  expedition  to  the  Euphrates,  touched 
the  valley  of  the  Jordan  on  his  way,  and  slew  king  Josiah  at 
Megiddo  (2  Chron.  xxxv.  22).  This  is  one  of  the  few  places 
in  Palestine  to  which  Herodotus  refers  (ii.  159).  He  speaks 
of  it  indefinitely  as  belonging  to  the'territory  of  the  u  Syrians.” 

The  Assyrians  and  the  Babylonians  overran  Palestine  with 
their  armies,  but  they  never  took  the  country  under  their  pro¬ 
tection,  or  acknowledged  it  as  a  dependent  province.  The  most 
that  they  did  was  to  subjugate  it,  and  receive  its  tribute.  The 
people  were  carried  away  captive  to  Babylon,  and  the  land 
remained  a  wilderness,  the  spoil  of  any  random  settlers  who 
might  wish  to  occupy  and  possess  it.  Cyrus  at  length  gave  the 
people  full  permission  to  return  to  their  own  country  ;  but  in 
the  opulent  Susa  they  were  in  little  haste  to  see  again  the  hills 
beyond  the  Jordan.  Darius  Hystaspis  suffered  them  to  offer 
their  sacrifices  to  Jehovah  ;  Darius  Codomannus  bound  them, 
after  their  return  to  Jerusalem,  by  an  oath,  never  more  to  take 
up  arms  against  him. 



Whatever,  therefore,  the  inquisitive  Herodotus  learned  in 
Babylon,  Tyre,  Sidon,  or  elsewhere,  regarding  this  unknown 
land  of  Palestine,  only  related  to  what  belonged  to  its  west 
coast,  to  the  neighbourhood  of  Gaza  and  Askelon  and  the 
Egyptian  frontier,  and  is  quite  unimportant,  valuable  though 
his  accounts  are  of  the  people  and  the  countries  in  the  imme¬ 
diate  vicinity.  Only  under  David  and  Solomon  do  we  find 
Arabians  from  Sabasa  and  Phoenicians  from  Tyre  entering 
Judaea,  in  consequence  of  hearing  of  the  wisdom  of  Solomon, 
or  for  the  purpose  of  assisting  in  the  building  of  the  temple  : 
there  appears  then  that  short  period  of  maritime  connection 
between  the  people  of  Palestine  and  the  remote  East,  of  which 
I  have  already  fully  spoken  in  the  account  of  the  Ophir  voyages. 

With  the  expeditions  of  Alexander  the  Great,  the  veil 
which  had  hidden  the  East  from  view  so  long  was  lifted ;  and 
amid  the  rest  that  was  disclosed,  Palestine  too  was  brought  into 
view.  That,  after  reducing  Tyre,  the  conqueror  marched 
through  Samaria  and  Judaea  as  far  as  Gaza,  is  certain;  but 
whether  he  offered  sacrifices  in  Jerusalem  to  Jehovah,  as 
Josephus1  asserts,  and  as  the  fathers  all  agree — not  with  the 
concurrence2  of  later  historians,  however,  despite  the  efforts  of 
St  Croix3  to  establish  Josephus’  statement — is  more  uncertain  ; 
but  after  that  time,  Palestine  became  a  land  full  of  interest  to 
Greek  writers.  For  many  Macedonians  and  Greeks  accom¬ 
panied  Alexander  on  his  expeditions,  among  them  Hecateus  of 
Abdera,  probably  the  first  of  his  nation  who  diffused  correct 
information  regarding  Palestine  among  his  countrymen.  His 
writings,  however,  like  all  those  of  his  cotemporaries  who 
described  the  country  which  we  are  now  to  study,  were  unfor¬ 
tunately  lost.  All  that  we  can  gather  of  them  is  to  be  gained 
from  the  quotations,  perhaps  a  little  garbled,  which  Josephus 
makes  from  them,  or  from  the  later  compilation  of  Arrian 
relating  to  the  history  of  Alexander.4  Jerusalem  was  then, 

1  FI.  Joseplri  Antiq.  Jud.  ed.  Haverc.  xi.  8vo,  pp.  578—582. 

2  Droysen,  Gesch.  Alexanders  d.  G.  Berlin  1833,  p.  197  ;  Gesenius, 
in  Ersch’s  Encyclop.  Pt.  iii.  p.  25  ;  Fr.  Chr.  Schlosser,  U nicer  sal-histor. 
Uebers.  der  Gescli.  der  alien  Welt.  Pt.  iii.  Abth.  2,  1831,  p.  178. 

3  St  Croix,  Examen  critique  des  anciens  historiens  d'' Alexandre  le  Grand , 
sec.  ed.  Paris  1804,  4to,  pp.  547-562. 

4  Arriani,  Exp.  Alex.  ii.  1. 



according  to  the  statement  of  Agatharchides  of  Cnidos,1  a  very 
large  city,  well  defended  by  nature  and  by  art :  its  high  priest 
Jaddus  opened  the  gates  and  the  temple  promptly  to  the 
conqueror;  and  “Jehovah  interposed/’  says  Josephus,  “to  save 
the  place  from  destruction.”  At  all  events,  the  great  Jewish 
capital  was  spared  the  fate  which  befell  its  proud  neighbours, 
Tyre,  Gaza,  and  so  many  other  capitals.  Palestine  did  not 
seem  insignificant  to  the  Macedonian  king ;  for  we  find  him 
mentioning  it,  in  a  speech  delivered  to  the  army  (Arrian,  de 
Exped.  Al.  vii.  9),  as  one  of  the  new  provinces  of  his  empire, 
and  placing  a  governor  over  the  Jordan  district,  and  Samaria 
as  well.  After  the  division  of  his  monarchy,  Palestine  again 
fell  out  of  notice ;  even  the  Seleucides  had  little  to  do  with 
it ;  and  almost  the  only  contact  which  the  Lagides  had  with  it, 
was  in  the  taking  away  a  hundred  thousand  of  the  inhabitants, 
and  colonizing  them  on  the  Nile.  Pompey  was  the  first  who 
made  the  Romans  acquainted  with  Palestine :  he  destroyed  the 
power  of  the  last  independent  king  in  Hither  Asia,  Mithridates2 
of  Pontus,  and  then  withdrew  with  his  victorious  army  from 
Cilicia  through  Judasa  to  Arabia  Petrma,  plundering  and  dese¬ 
crating  the  temple  of  Jehovah  on  his  way.  Judaea  was  then 
disturbed  by  a  civil  war  between  Hyrcanus  and  Aristobulus  : 
the  Romans  took  no  further  part  in  it  than  to  reduce  the  first 
to  the  place  of  a  sacerdotal  etlmarch,  tributary  to  themselves, 
and  to  annex  Palestine  to  Syria  as  a  Roman  province.  The 
story  is  told  in  full  by  Josephus  (Antiq.  Jud .  xiv.  3,  4), 
but  the  Roman  historians  have  passed  over  it  very  cursorily. 
But  not  long  after  the  time  of  Pompey,  Palestine  began  to 
be  a  land  of  interest  to  the  Romans  ;  and  in  the  reigns  of 
Augustus,  Tiberius,  Vespasian,  and  Titus,  and  particularly 
during  the  siege  of  the  last,  it  was  described  with  a  good 
degree  of  detail. 

Still  it  must  be  confessed  that  the  country  was  to  the 
Romans  nothing  but  a  battle-ground,  and  its  inhabitants 
nothing  but  enemies  or  tributary  provincials.  So  far  as  their 
castra  and  vice  militares  extended,  so  far  only  did  they  take 
note  of  places  and  make  reckoning  of  distances.  Farther 
than  their  own  garrisoned  stations  they  did  not  care  to  go ; 

1  FI.  Joseph.  Antiq.  xii.  1. 

2  Job.  v.  Muller,  Ally.  Gesch.  i.  p.  290. 



and  hence  we  have  no  gradual  toning  down  of  what  is 
light  into  what  grows  more  and  more  obscure,  but  a  sharp 
line  between  what  is  clear  and  what  is  gross  darkness.  Geo¬ 
graphy  does  not  owe  a  great  deal  to  Roman  efforts  :  only  a 
few  of  the  great  men  of  that  country — such,  for  instance,  as 
Cicero  (Cic.  de  lege  agraria  contr.  Hull.  25) — set  any  value 
upon  it ;  and  neither  Polybius,  Strabo,  nor  Claudius  Ptolemy, 
the  great  leaders  in  geographical  science  during  the  reigns  of 
the  emperors,  were  Romans.  That  lustful  Imperium  Romanum 
had  but  one  great  object,  and  that  was  to  absorb  the  whole 
orbis  terrarum  within  itself  ;  and  whatever  lay  beyond  the  lines 
which  marked  the  outer  frontier  of  the  empire,  troubled  the 
Romans  as  little  as  what  lies  in  the  outer  66  barbarian”  world 
troubles  Mussulmen  and  Chinese.  And  when  we  add  to  this 
the  absurd  representations  and  the  errors  which  prevailed 
about  the  Jewish  nation,  and  found  expression  on  the  pages  of 
the  most  accomplished  and  wisest  of  the  Romans,  even  of  their 
greatest  historians,  it  is  not  hard  to  see  how  little  we  owe  that 
nation  for  a  knowledge  of  the  geography  of  Palestine.  The 
Romans  derive  the  origin  of  the  Jews  from  Crete,  finding 
their  only  reason  in  the  resemblance  between  Ida  and  Juda : 
they  call  Moses  Bacchus,  because  they  happen  to  discover  a 
kind  of  thyrsus  among  the  sacred  insignia  of  the  temple. 
Even  Tacitus,  who  gives  in  his  history  (lib.  v.)  a  brief  compen¬ 
dium  of  Jewish  antiquities,  remarks  that  everything  which  a 
Roman  looks  upon  as  holy,  a  Jew  looks  upon  as  profane,  and 
vice  versa .  When  Pompey  entered  the  holy  of  holies  of  the 
temple  at  Jerusalem,  he  found  there  not  a  single  image  :  a 
kind  of  horror  seized  him  at  the  atheism  of  the  Jews.  And 
Tacitus  gives  his  concurrence  with  Pompey  in  this  matter, 
although  he  does  acknowledge  that  the  Jews  claim  to  have  a 
u  God  in  their  heart  who  is  eternally  unchangeable.” 

The  so-called  classic  period  of  antiquity  gives  very  little 
light  to  us  in  studying  the  ancient  geography  of  Palestine : 
that  which  is  so  rich  and  valuable  for  determining  the  facts 
and  the  scenes  of  profane  history,  leaves  us  here  without  help. 
Yet  the  meagre  accounts  of  Strabo,  Diodorus,  Tacitus,  and 
Claudius  Ptolemy  should  not  pass  unread ;  nor  Pliny,  who  gave 
the  best  compendium  of  the  topography  of  Palestine  (H.  A7. 
v.  14,  15).  Nor  are  their  itineraria  and  tables  of  distances 



without  value,  difficult  as  they  are  sometimes  to  make  out,  and 
compare  with  the  results  of  modern  travel. 


In  great  contrast  with  the  meagre  list  of  authorities  on 
Palestine  which  the  classic  writers  display,  is  the  abundant 
material  which  is  supplied,  to  an  extent  unparalleled  in  any 
other  country  of  the  globe,  by  the  native  writers  of  the  land 
itself.  The  history  which  they  furnish  flows  uninterruptedly 
on  like  a  full,  freely-moving  stream,  watering  the  roots  of  the 
massive  forests  of  the  great  primeval  world  of  human  destinies. 
Through  the  great  trees  the  clear  light  of  heaven  can  be  dis¬ 
tinctly  seen  ;  but  here  and  there  are  great  blots  of  darkness — 
the  passages  of  Jewish  history  which  are  impenetrably  obscure. 
The  sources  to  which  I  refer  are  the  Scriptures  of  the  Old 
and  New  Testament,  together  with  many  valuable  apocryphal 
writings.  The  writings  of  Josephus,  too,  are  reckoned  among 
our  prominent  authorities  ;  but  their  character  is  of  another  sort. 

The  contents  of  the  biblical  books  are  not,  however,  to  be 
considered  as  intentionally  or  directly  geographical :  they  are 
so,  as  a  general  rule,  only  in  a  secondary  sense ;  and  it  is  only  in 
the  last  two  of  the  books  of  Moses  and  in  that  of  Joshua  that 
we  find  tabulated  lists  of  a  topographical  character.  In  many 
of  the  other  books  of  the  Bible,  what  is  geographical  is  merely 
illustrative  of  the  religious  or  historical  meaning.  Nevertheless 
great  weight  is  to  be  allowed  for  just  those  statements  which  in 
a  merely  secondary  sense  are  geographical ;  for  they  are  all  the 
more  trustworthy  in  their  nature,  that  they  were  given  without 
special  design.  They  are  of  great  service,  too,  in  enabling  us 
to  gain  a  conception  of  the  land  as  a  whole,  and  to  set  it  before 
us  just  as  it  was  when  the  authors  who  allude  casually  to  its 
geography  wrote.  This  gives  an  inestimable  worth  to  writings 
which  throw  an  indirect  light  upon  our  path  ;  for  those  truths 
which  are  brought  to  us  naturally  and  simply,  and  not  in  the 
dress  of  an  artistic  representation,  are  those  which  most  com¬ 
mand  our  assent.  We  prize  them  most  when  we  see  them  not 
isolated,  but  woven  smoothly  into  the  fabric  of  history.  We 
have  already  found  it  so  in  a  number  of  instances  which  met 
us  in  our  study  of  the  geography  of  the  Sinai  Peninsula  :  we 



have  found  that  we  could  interpret  the  records  of  the  past 
best  by  familiarity  with  the  nature  of  that  land  at  the  present 
time;1  and  we  have  also  discovered  a  remarkable  correlation 
between  the  events  which  are  said  to  have  transpired  there,  and 
the  scene  where  they  transpired.  And  it  is  just  as  strikingly 
the  case  in  Palestine ;  and  the  geography  of  that  country,  as 
we  find  it  to-day,  is  the  strongest  testimony  of  the  truth  of 
that  history  which  purports  to  emanate  thence.  The  natural 
scenery  of  Palestine  speaks  in  but  one  voice  in  favour  of  the 
Bible ;  every  word  of  the  sacred  narrative  receives  its  best 
interpretation  by  being  studied  in  connection  with  the  place 
where  it  was  recorded.  No  one  can  trace  without  joy  and 
wonder  the  verification  which  geography  pays  to  the  history  of 
the  Ploly  Land.  So  strong  is  the  argument  drawn  thence,  that 
the  most  subtle  dialectician  is  baffled  by  it,  and  is  entrapped 
in  the  net  which  his  own  sophistry  has  spun. 

In  the  biblical  books,  then,  we  have  all  the  elements  which 
we  need  to  enable  us  to  realize  the  natural  characteristics  of 
Palestine,  and  to  set  it  before  the  mind’s  eye  in  all  the  glow 
and  reality  of  a  perfect  picture.  We  are  transported  to  the 
land  itself,  and  see  it  for  ourselves,  gaining  thereby  a  far  more 
satisfactory  impression  of  it  than  any  description  taken  from 
without  would  furnish.  Does  not  every  reader,  does  not  even 
the  imaginative  mind  of  childhood,  reproduce,  after  perusing 
the  picturesque  narrative  of  Abraham’s  life,  and  form  for  itself 
a  life-like  representation  of  the  land  of  Canaan  and  the  knightly 
shepherd  life  of  the  patriarchs?  Does  any  one  go  over  the  account 
of  the  journey  of  Israel  through  the  wilderness,  and  not  picture 
to  himself  Edom  and  the  lofty  Sinai  and  TIoreb?  The  book 
of  Joshua  transports  the  reader  across  the  Jordan  to  Jericho, 
takes  him  from  the  camp  at  Gilgal  to  the  high  hills  of  the 
Amorite  princes  and  the  other  Canaanite  kings  ;  and  after  the 
victory  is  won,  speaks  out  before  the  eye  a  bright  and  living 
picture  of  the  land  as  it  lay  divided  among  the  twelve  tribes  of 
Israel.  Could  any  one  be  introduced  to  the  country  by  more 
competent  guides?  From  the  wilderness  of  Arabia,  from 
Kadesh-Barnea  and  Beersheba  in  the  south  to  the  sources  of  the 
Jordan  near  Dan,  and  to  the  heights  of  Hermon  and  Lebanon, 
the  Promised  Land  comes  out  in  the  narrative  of  Joshua  in  all 
1  See  K.  von  Raumer’s  Paldstina ,  2d  ed.  p.  2. 



its  unity,  and  with,  all  its  characteristic  features,  in  the  best 
possible  manner  to  aid  us  in  our  study  of  its  geography. 

From  the  historical  books  which  follow,  we  learn  the  political 
relations  with  other  nations  to  which  the  geographical  character 
of  the  country  led  ;  the  Psalmist  and  the  prophets  then  lead  us 
further  on,  and  teach  us  what  the  people  themselves  thought 
of  their  own  home,  and  of  the  lands  adjoining.  From  the  two 
we  learn  the  connection  between  Palestine  and  its  inhabitants 
on  the  one  hand,  and  the  history  of  the  World  and  the  will  of 
Jehovah  on  the  other.  And  if  the  Pentateuch  and  Joshua 
give  us  the  most  important  geographical  data,  it  is  not  to  be 
denied  that  wre  owTe  a  great  deal  of  illustrative  material  to  the 
books  of  Judges,  the  Chronicles,  the  Maccabees,  the  prophets 
Isaiah,  Jeremiah,  Ezekiel,  and  others. 

The  books  of  the  New  Testament  give  fewer  detailed  geo¬ 
graphical  features  than  those  of  the  Old;  yet  the  graphic  manner 
in  which  mountains  and  rivers,  special  districts,  popular  cus¬ 
toms,  climate  and  seasons,  architecture,  and  the  fruits  of  the  earth 
are  touched,  give  us  so  clearly  defined  a  picture,  that  the  whole 
life  of  Jesus,  His  walks  through  the  country,  His  teachings,  so 
richly  illustrated  as  they  were  by  the  scenes  in  which  He  lived, 
are  intelligible  not  to  the  people  of  Palestine  only,  but  to  those 
of  every  land.  And  meagre  as  is  the  mere  number  of  places 
mentioned  in  the  New  Testament,  yet  as  clearness  is  worth 
more  than  number,  the  books  of  the  Christian  dispensation 
have  a  priceless  geographical  value.  The  names  of  Galilee 
and  of  the  Sea  of  Tiberias  enclose  a  whole  world  of  hallowed 
scenes  and  memories. 

Outside  of  the  Scriptures,  Josephus  holds  the  first  and  the 
only  place  among  the  native  authors  of  Judaea ;  for  Philo  of 
Alexandria,  the  later  Talmud,  and  other  authorities,  are  of 
little  service  in  understanding  the  geography  of  the  country. 
Josephus  is,  however,  to  be  used  with  great  care.  As  a  Jewish 
scholar,  as  an  officer  of  Galilee,  as  a  military  man,  and  a  person 
of  great  experience  in  everything  belonging  to  his  own  nation, 
he  attained  to  that  remarkable  familiarity  with  his  country  in 
every  part,  which  his  antiquarian  researches  so  abundantly 
evince.1  But  he  was  controlled  by  political  motives  :  his  great 

1  Flav.  Josephi,  Opera  omnia ,  ed.  S.  Havercamp,  Amsterlod.  fol.  1726, 
T.  i.  ii. ;  R.  Traill,  new  translation  of  the  works  of  Josephus;  Phil.  Chasles, 



purpose  was  to  bring  bis  people,  the  despised  Jewish  race,  into 
honour  with  the  Greeks  and  Romans ;  and  this  purpose  under¬ 
lay  every  sentence,  and  filled  his  history  with  distortions  and 
exaggerations.  In  his  Jewish  Antiquities  lie  had  no  authorities 
but  that  which  we  enjoy  in  common  with  him — the  Old  Testa¬ 
ment;  and  in  this  field  we  can  follow  him,  and  correct  many 
of  his  misstatements.  But  in  his  accounts  of  the  great  war 
which  swept  over  his  country  during  his  life,  and  in  the  detailed 
topographical  descriptions  which  he  gives  in  connection  with  it, 
we  are  unhappily  without  any  means  of  following  and  cor¬ 
recting  him.  To  add  to  the  uncertainties  which  perplex  us  in 
Josephus,  he  wrote  his  books  at  an  advanced  period  of  his  life, 
and  in  a  foreign  land,  and  so  either  fell  unavoidably  into  mis¬ 
takes  about  distances  and  like  matters,  or  else  purposely  exag¬ 
gerated  the  simple  truth.  It  may  not  be  uncharitable  to  suspect 
that  the  latter  was  the  cause  of  many  of  his  errors  ;  for  he  does 
not  conceal  the  duplicity  of  his  nature  in  the  sketch  which  he 
has  given  us  of  his  own  life.  Nevertheless  the  authority  of 
Josephus  is  great  respecting  the  general  geographical  character 
of  his  own  country;  and  his  writings  are  to  be  accepted  and 
used,  with  care  indeed,  but  as  a  rich  storehouse  of  original 
material,  whose  want  could  not  be  supplied. 


A  third  source  is  the  Christian  literature  of  the  middle 
ages,  so  far  as  it  touches  upon  Palestine ;  and  with  this  may 
be  coupled  some  works  of  Moslem  writers  of  the  same  period. 
The  list  of  these  given  by  Meusel1  and  others  is  so  full,  that  it  is 
not  necessary  for  me  to  give  it  anew.  I  write  only  to  specify 
one  or  two  works  which  are  worthy  of  the  most  careful  study, 
among  which  is  conspicuous,  Blasius  Ugolinus,  Antiquitates 
Sacrce ,  Venetiis  1744-1769,  34  vols.,  which  is  a  vast  store¬ 
house  of  investigations  regarding  our  subject,  made  by  the 
most  competent  scholars  and  thinkers  of  many  centuries.  Nor 

Etudes  historiq. ;  Schlosser,  i.a.l.  pp.  77-79  ;  Rosenmiiller,  i.a.l.  pp.  7-11  ; 
De  Wette,  Lehrbuch  der  hebr.  jiidisch.  ArcTiaologie ,  3d  ed.  1812,  p.  7, 
etc.  etc. 

1  Job.  G.  Meusel,  Bibliotheca  historica,  vol.  i.  p.  2,  Lips.  1781,  pp.  1-112; 
Rosenmiiller,  Robinson,  etc.  etc. 



should  I  pass  by  the  celebrated  Onomasticon  Urbium  et  Locorum 
Sacrce  Scriptures ,  edited  by  Bonfrere  and  Clericus,  in  which 
Eusebius  and  Jerome1  have  indicated  the  situation  of  places 
mentioned  in  the  Bible,  so  far  as  they  were  acquainted  with  it. 
Eusebius  died  about  a.d.  340,  after  living  a  long  time  in 
Palestine  as  bishop  of  Caesarea.  Yet,  notwithstanding  his  pro¬ 
tracted  residence,  he  never  attained  to  that  thorough  geographi¬ 
cal  knowledge  of  the  country  possessed  by  Jerome,  the  most 
learned  of  the  theologians  of  the  East.  The  latter  was  born  in 
Dalmatia,  educated  in  Rome,  and  after  travelling  largely, 
pursued  his  studies  so  long  in  Palestine,  that  he  seemed  to  be 
almost  a  native  of  the  country.  Eusebius’  Greek  geographical 
index  to  the  Bible  Jerome  translated  into  Latin;  but  he  did  not 
stop  there:  he  added  comments  and  corrections,  producing  a 
result  of  great  accuracy  and  value.  He  died  at  Bethlehem  in 
420,  after  residing  there  for  many  years.  Many  errors  which 
crept  in  from  the  Septuagint  translation,  many  different  ways 
of  writing  the  same  name,  and  the  additions  which  have  been 
made  by  later  editors,  to  whose  care  we  are  probably  indebted 
for  the  alphabetical  arrangement,  make  it  necessary  to  use 
the  Onomasticon  with  a  certain  degree  of  caution,  which  is 
heightened  by  the  fact  that,  at  the  period  when  Eusebius  and 
Jerome  lived,  many  of  the  localities  mentioned  in  the  Old 
Testament  had  long  been  forgotten,  and  their  site  was  merely 
conjectural,  or  assigned  by  the  voice  of  tradition,  to  which  these 
good  fathers  too  easily  assented.  Their  accounts,  where  they  do 
not  palpably  harmonize  with  the  Scripture  narrative,  are  to  be 
subjected  therefore  to  careful  investigation.2  A  new  edition  of 
their  work,  prepared  with  the  aid  of  all  the  new  critical  and 
illustrative  material  which  has  been  recently  added  to  our  sources 
of  knowledge,  is  much  to  be  desired ;  and  much  light  would  be 
shed  upon  the  Onomasticon  by  the  miscellaneous  writings  of 
Jerome,  in  which  he  has  made  statements  quite  in  antagonism 
to  those  in  that  work,  and  which  are  far  more  trustworthy,  as 
the  results  of  his  latest  and  largest  experience.  Such  a  task 

1  Onomasticon  Urbium  et  Locorum  Sacrx  Scrip  turx — 1.  Liber  de  Locis 
hebraicis ,  etc.,  ed.  Bonfrere,  Paris  ed.  1631,  ed.  1659  recensuit  et  anxit  Joh. 
Clericus,  Amstelodami  1707,  fol.  Also  in  Bl.  Ugolini,  Thes.  vol.  v.  fol. 
1-379;  and  Rhenfredi,  Pericula  critica  in  loca  Eusebii,  etc.,  in  Opp. 

2  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  i.  225,  226. 



has  but  very  recently  been  accomplished  in  connection  with  a 
yet  earlier  work,  the  Itinerarium  I Iier os o ly m itami m, 1  which  was 
written  in  333  by  an  unknown  traveller  from  Aquitania  (Bur- 
digala,  Bourdeaux),  who  made  a  pilgrimage  to  the  Basilica 
erected  by  Constantine  the  Great  in  Jerusalem,  and  whose 
account  of  the  stations  and  distances  in  Palestine  is  the  most 
ancient  of  all  those  which  come  under  the  present  division  of 
authorities.  The  Itinerarium  Antonmi  and  the  Tabula  Peutin- 
geriana  give  only  names  and  measurements  in  Roman  miles. 
Stephen  of  Byzantium,  n repl  n roXecov,  writing  in  the  beginning 
of  the  sixth  century,  and  the  anonymous  geographer  of  Ravenna, 
who  in  the  fifteenth  chapter  of  the  second  book  cites  the  names 
of  some  fifty  places  in  Palestine,  which  he  probably  culled  from 
various  itineraria ,  and  threw  together  without  any  arrangement, 
have  left  us  materials  of  only  subordinate  value.  It  is  very 
different,  however,  with  the  travels  of  the  palmers  or  pilgrims 
to  the  Holy  Land,  of  whom  I  shall  next  speak. 


This  name  can  be  applied  to  nearly  all  the  older  narratives 
of  journeys  to  the  Holy  Land;  for  those  travels  were  almost 
always  undertaken  with  more  or  less  regard  to  a  religious  end, 
and  in  a  desire  to  view  the  scenes  of  the  Saviour’s  life,  to  visit 
the  places  which  commemorate  the  events  of  Old  Testament 
history,  and  to  tread  the  ground  hallowed  by  the  steps  of  saints 
and  martyrs.  Nor  was  this  done  out  of  a  mere  idle  curiosity,  but 
in  the  grave  conviction  that  to  look  upon  those  sacred  scenes  was 
to  help  the  soul  to  secure  its  salvation.  That  the  ground  which 
had  once  been  so  ennobled  should  be  desecrated  by  the  temples 
which  Hadrian  erected  in  honour  of  Venus,  Zeus,  or  Adonis, 
only  increased  the  desire  of  Christians  to  behold  the  places  thus 
put  to  these  shameful  uses.  Cyrillus1 2  is  one  of  the  few  authors 
who  witnessed  and  described  the  condition  of  affairs  in  Pales¬ 
tine  before  the  purification  which  followed  the  accession  of  the 

1  G.  Partliey  et  M.  Pinder,  Itinerarium  Antonini  Augusti  et  Hierosolymi- 
tanum ,  Berol.  1848,  prxfat.  xxxiv.,  and  pp.  261-290,  together  with  an 
excellent  itinerary  by  the  editor. 

2  G.  C.  Peischl,  Theol.  cle  Patr.  Cyrilli ,  Hierosol.  Episc.  Opera  quae  super- 
sunt  omnia ,  vol.  i.,  Monachi  1848 ;  Vita ,  p.  xvi.  etc.  etc. 


Byzantine  power  to  the  control  of  the  Holy  Land;  he  was 
born  a.d.  315,  and  in  347  was  appointed  presbyter,  and  then 
episcopus  Hierosolymornm.  In  Catechis.  xii.  c.  20,  he  says : 
Bethlehem  locum  ante  paucos  annos  fuisse  sylvestrem.  Catech. 
xv.  5:  In  loco,  in  quo  crucifixus  est,  prius  hortum  fuisse,  cujus 
adhuc  vestigia  et  reliquiae  manent.  Catechis.  ib.  9 :  Ante  sepul- 
chri  exornationam  a  Constantino  factam,  speluncam  fuisse  sancto 
sepulchro  pro  vestibulo,  quae  Constantini  jussu  erasa  fuit.  Porro 
sancta  loca  post  annum  326  purgari  et  exornari  caeperunt. 
When  Helena,  the  mother  of  Constantine  the  Great,  after  the 
victory  over  Maxentius  a.d.  312,  and  the  adopting  of  the  cross 
as  the  emblem  on  the  Greek  banners,  began  to  build  Christian 
churches  on  the  sites  of  the  Scripture  scenes,  the  number  of 
pilgrims  to  the  Holy  Land  rapidly  increased.  She  herself 
went  thither  in  326,  and,  according  to  Nicephori  Histor.  viii. 
c.  30,  erected  more  than  thirty  chapels  and  churches  in  the 
country.  Thousands  followed  her  thither,  many  of  them  to 
remain.  Countless  unfortunates,  who  were  the  victims  of  the 
incessant  persecutions  of  the  Western  Empire,  fled  thither  to 
escape  the  cruelty  which  met  them  at  home.  Especially  was 
this  the  case  when,  in  403  and  410,  Alaric  the  Goth  stormed 
Rome  and  ravaged  Italy.  The  number  who  fled  then  to 
Palestine  was  beyond  computation.  Many  of  these  put  them¬ 
selves  under  the  protection  of  Jerome,  who  was  then  living 
there,  and  who,  in  his  letters,  tells  many  a  touching  story 
of  the  woes  of  these  enforced  pilgrims  and  petitioners  for 
his  hospitality.  The  same  sad  history  was  repeated  in  every 
one  of  the  descents  of  the  barbarians  upon  the  various 
Roman  provinces.  And  when  the  Vandals  scoured  Christian 
Africa  in  429,  they  drove  from  the  land  a  great  number  of 
believers,  who  at  once  fled  for  refuge  to  the  Terra  Sancta 
near  by. 

Meanwhile  the  attacks  of  these  northern  barbarians  filled 
the  minds  of  men  who,  though  unbelievers,  were  yet  inclined 
to  Christianity,  with  dismay.  And  men  who  were  enlightened 
by  the  gospel,  saw,  or  thought  that  they  saw,  the  hand  of  their 
God  in  all  those  sad  events :  they  believed  that  His  judgments 
were  now  poured  out,  and  that  He  was  pulling  down  all  false 
idols  from  their  high  places,  and  asserting  His  own  unrivalled 
sway.  Prompted  by  the  advice  of  St  Augustine,  the  Spanish 

VOL.  II.  C 



presbyter,  Paul  Orosius,1  wrote  in  420  his  history,  in  which 
this  thought  had  free  expression. 

Great  numbers  of  the  persecuted  believers,  as  was  said 
above,  found  peace  and  rest  in  the  Holy  Land — in  the  country 
of  so  many  sacred  memories.  Besides,  under  the  Byzantine 
sway,  this  province  enjoyed  a  season  of  quiet  and  security  which 
it  perhaps  never  had  before,  and  which  it  has  not  had  since. 
It  was  not  till  long  after  this  time  that  the  sword  of  the  Koran 
was  drawn,  and  the  soil  of  this  land  reddened  with  the  blood  of 
its  inhabitants.  In  the  fifth  and  sixth  centuries  it  was  densely 
peopled,  and  every  part  of  its  territory  was  covered  with  Chris¬ 
tian  churches,  even  to  the  most  sequestered  nooks ;  and  it  was 
one  of  the  most  flourishing  provinces  of  the  Empire  of  the  East. 

In  addition  to  the  numbers  of  settlers  and  colonists  who 
thronged  to  Palestine,  there  was  a  great  increase  among  the 
clergy,  the  monks,  and  the  hermits  of  the  country ;  in  one  word, 
among  all  who  in  that  epoch,  when  the  typical  life  of  the  con¬ 
vent  was  just  finding  expression,  had  turned  their  back  upon 
the  world,  and  were  seeking  a  place  of  undisturbed  meditation 
as  the  best  preparation  for  heaven.  The  pious  liberality  of  the 
imperial  house  of  Constantinople,  and  particularly  of  Justinian, 
gave  a  fresh  impetus  to  the  establishment  of  churches,  convents, 
bishoprics,  and  was  seen  at  once  in  the  edifices  which  arose, 
conspicuous  among  which  was  the  Convent  of  Sinai  (see  Pro¬ 
copius,  cle  AEdijiciis  Imperatoris  Justiniani ,  lib.  v.  c.  6-9).  Every¬ 
where  churches,  chapels,  convents,  with  hospices  close  by  for 
the  entertainment  of  guests,  showed  the  generous  bounty  of 
the  Byzantine  rulers.  Not  only  were  the  fruitful  valleys  and 
hills  of  Jerusalem,  Shechem,  Nazareth,  and  Galilee,  covered 
with  luxuriance ;  but  cisterns,  baths,  hermitages,  and  grottos, 
transformed  even  the  hitherto  unpeopled  desert  into  a  home 
for  man.  The  countless  ruins  which  are  still  seen  testify  to 
the  extraordinary  activity  and  prosperity  of  those  times.  At 
the  place  where  John  the  Baptist  had  led  the  Saviour  down  to 
the  waters  of  the  Jordan,  the  extreme  sanctity  of  the  spot  was 
commemorated  by  a  pavement  of  marble,  and  hundreds  of 
thousands  resorted  thither  to  bathe  in  the  sacred  stream :  one 

1  Pauli  Orosii,  Presbyteri  Hispani  adversus  Paganos  Historiarum ,  libri 
vii.  ed.  S.  Havercampus,  Lugd.  Batavor.  17C7;  lib.  i.  ad  Aurelium  Augus- 
tinum,  p.  1  et  scp 



itinerary  tells  us  that  there  was  a  gathering-place  for  all  the 
peoples  of  the  earth.  The  valley  of  the  Jordan  was  transformed 
into  a  hermitage,  inhabited  by  throngs  of  recluses.  The  terrors 
and  wonders  of  the  Dead  Sea  drew  so  many  monks  to  the  wild 
recesses  on  its  rocky  border,  that  about  the  year  600  it  is 
asserted  that  not  less  than  twenty  monasteries  stood  there. 
Antoninus  Martyr  speaks  of  them  in  his  itinerary,  written  at 
about  that  date :  at  one  of  them  10,000  monks  are  said  to  have 
dwelt ;  and  the  grottos  and  caverns  now  observable  in  the  neigh¬ 
bourhood  of  the  Convent  of  St  Saba — the  almost  inaccessible 
places  of  refuge  for  those  thronging  multitudes — even  now  fill 
the  traveller  with  wonder. 

But  soon  there  came  a  change,  and  all  this  fair  prosperity 
was  brought  to  nought ;  for  in  the  seventh  century  the  sword  of 
the  Arab  passed  over  the  land,  and  transformed  it  into  a  waste 
and  a  solitude.  A  remarkable  combination  of  oppression,  want, 
superstition,  and  a  hallowed  longing  to  see  the  scenes  of  Bible 
story,  had  peopled  the  land  with  refugees  from  Europe.  But 
the  tide  turned;  and  many  who  had  gone  thither  with ’a  desire 
to  gain  the  salvation  of  their  soul,1  were  forced  to  flee  from  this 
terrible  power,  which  came  up  from  Arabia,  and  to  leave  behind 
the  spiritual  advantages  of  Palestine,  bearing  away  with  them, 
however,  more  palpable  blessings  still. 

To  these  supposed  blessings,  in  addition  to  the  forgiveness 
of  sins  itself,  and  the  absolution  which  the  church  granted  for 
many  years  in  consideration  of  these  pilgrimages,  belonged  also 
the  relics,  on  the  retaining  of  which  the  continuance  of  absolu¬ 
tion  hinged.  Thus  was  renewed  in  the  Christian  scheme  the 
old  pagan  idea  of  the  virtue  contained  in  amulets,  which,  when 
brought  home,  served  as  a  charm  to  secure  the  pilgrim  from 
danger,  and  which  could  transmit  their  influence  to  others.  The 
virtue  of  these  relics  increased  rather  than  diminished  with  age ; 
and  their  sacred  power  to  charm  away  ill,  descended  as  ail  heir¬ 
loom  from  generation  to  generation.  The  relics  were,  as  a 
general  rule,  articles  which  had  had  a  certain  relation  to  the  life 
of  the  Saviour,  or  to  that  of  the  apostles  and  martyrs.  Earth, 
wood,  water  from  hallowed  ground  and  from  the  Jordan,  gar¬ 
ments  dipped  in  that  sacred  river — all  were  esteemed  precious. 

1  Regarding  the  pilgrimages,  see  Yfilken,  Geschichte  der  Kreutzziige , 
Leipzig  1807,  Pt.  i.  pp.  3-19,  32,  etc. 



In  like  manner,  the  pilgrim’s  staff,  the  shell  with  which  he 
dipped  the  waters  from  the  holy  wells,  palm  branches,  thorns, 
garlands,  flowers  like  the  roses  of  Jericho  growing  in  the  very 
desert,  and  reputed  to  have  been  carried  by  Mary  in  her  flight 
to  Egypt,  had  the  odour  of  sanctity  upon  them.  The  balm  of 
Gilead,  the  pitch  from  the  Dead  Sea,  were  also  esteemed  very 
holy;  but  above  all  relics  in  value,  were  the  bones  of  saints  and 
martyrs,  dragged  out  of  their  reputed  graves,  and  given  away 
even  to  the  last  fragments. 

Far  more  full  of  peril,  and  far  greater  the  merit,  when 
pilgrimages  were  made  and  relics  taken  away  after  the  followers 
of  Mohammed,  the  bitter  enemies  of  all  Christians,  had  entered 
Palestine  as  conquerors,  and  swept  over  the  whole  East.  It 
was  accounted  as  a  deed  of  that  poorness  of  spirit  which  Christ 
extolled,  when  the  courage  was  exhibited  that  ventured  to  break 
through  the  iron  bonds  which  the  caliphs  in  634  set  around 
Jerusalem,  in  the  establishment  of  their  mosques  there  as  well 
as  through  the  Levant.  Then,  to  make  a  pilgrimage  to  the 
land  of  the  unbelievers  was  equivalent  to  martyrdom,  and 
heaven  was  the  certain  reward  for  such  a  deed  of  daring  as 
to  venture  thither.  Those  who  returned  safely  after  such  a 
perilous  undertaking,  gained  a  high  place  in  the  estimation  of 
their  fellows;  and  worldly  advantages  quickly  followed — for 
those  who  had  ventured  so  far  had  learned  to  use  their  know¬ 
ledge  to  good  purpose — and  soon  opened  the  channels  of  a 
lucrative  trade  with  the  people  of  Palestine.  Those  who  went 
sent  back  to  their  friends  full  accounts  of  their  adventures  and 
perils,  glowing  descriptions  of  the  sacred  places,  and  of  life  in 
this  new  field  of  experience:  these  accounts  furnished  not  onlv 
entertainment  to  those  who  were  left  behind,  but  edification  as 
well ;  and  when  transcribed,  they  were  publicly  read  in  schools, 
convents,  and  churches.  The  many  hundreds  of  pilgrimages 
to  the  Holy  Land  gave  rise  to  a  voluminous  mass  of  documents 
of  the  above  character;  and  after  the  Crusades  the  number 
was  so  much  augmented  as  to  become  literally  beyond  compu¬ 
tation.  In  their  day  they  formed  the  favourite  reading  of  the 
western  world,  being  edifying  and  romantic  at  the  same  time : 
they  were  copied  largely  (not  always  without  some  changes 
and  additions),  and  were  passed  from  hand  to  hand,  from 
convent  to  convent,  from  school  to  school,  from  land  to  land. 



Monks  carefully  preserved  them  as  the  most  cherished  memo¬ 
rials  of  the  founders  of  the  order  or  the  abbey  to  which  they 
were  attached,  or  of  the  knights  whose  patronage  and  protection 
they  enjoyed.  All  classes  being  so  closely  united  by  the  ties 
of  the  church,  had  an  interest  in  these  memorials  of  eastern 
travel.  Many  hundreds  of  those  documents  have  come  down 
to  us ;  they  display  even  now  the  marks  of  their  wide  diffu¬ 
sion.  Many  of  them  have  been  printed  and  given  to  the  world. 
They  generally  bear  some  such  title  as — Peregrinatio  in  Terrain 
Sanctam ,  Hodoeporicum ,  or  Itinerarium ,  and  they  usually  have 
an  appendix  containing  the  mirabilia  mundi ,  de  locis  sanctis , 
or  the  like.  Their  values  are  exceedingly  varied :  in  some  there 
is  displayed  the  whole  range  of  learning  which  their  authors 
could  employ  for  the  elucidation  of  Scripture ;  in  others,  all  the 
remarkable  features  of  the  Holy  Land  are  touched  upon  and 
held  up  rather  in  a  secular  than  in  a  sacred  light :  here  are 
some  which  express  the  outpouring  of  some  longing  pilgrim’s 
soul ;  there,  some  which  can  only  serve  as  guide-books  for  those 
who  wish  to  know  the  main  routes  of  travel :  here  are  authentic 
and  instructive  transcripts  from  nature)  trustworthy  representa¬ 
tions  of  what  has  actually  been  seen  and  experienced;  there, 
mere  collections  of  idle  tales  and  legends,  and  the  exaggerations 
of  superstition, — mere  copies,  it  may  be,  and  repetitions  of  what 
had  often  been  told  before — the  results  of  a  morbid  curiosity  to 
see  what  is  supernatural,  and  to  find  the  Holy  Land  still  the 
home  of  miracle.  Such  records  as  the  last-named  throw  no 
light  on  those  subjects  which  concern  us  in  our  present  studies. 

In  respect,  too,  to  the  period  of  time  in  which  these  accounts 
were  written,  their  value  is  exceedingly  varied ;  but  the  careful 
use  of  them,  taking  them  up  in  a  strictly  chronological  order,  is 
by  no  means  a  useless  exercise,  and  often  leads  to  unexpected 
light,  and  to  results  which  are  seen  even  at  the  present  day. 
The  most  important  of  them,  which  were  written  before  the 
time  of  the  Crusades,  are  the  accounts  of  the  unknown  author 
of  Bur  dig  ala  (Bourdeaux),  of  Antoninus  Martyr,  Arculfus, 
Willibaldus  Bernardus,  and  Altmann.  I  have  already  alluded 
to  the  oldest  of  these  works  (a.d.  333),  the  Itinerarium  Burdi- 
galense ,  or  Ilierosolymitanum /  in  connection  with  the  condition 

1  Ed.  G.  Parthey  et  M.  Pinder,  in  Itlnerar.  Antonini  Augusti  et  Hierosol. 



of  the  country  at  the  most  flourishing  epoch  of  the  Byzantine 
power,  whose  architectural  triumphs  and  energy  in  establishing 
Christian  foundations  it  commemorates.  I  have  also  referred 
to  the — 

Itinerarium  Beati  Antonini  Martyris ,*  written  about  a.d. 
600,  shortly  before  the  invasion  of  the  Mohammedans  and  the 
sad  extinction  of  the  Christian  power  in  Palestine.  About 
a.d.  700,  Adamnus  (ex  Arculfo),  de  Locis  Sanctis ,  libri  iii.2 
Arculfus,  a  French  bishop,  after  his  return  from  the  Holy 
Land,  was  driven  by  a  storm  to  the  west  coast  of  Scotland,  and 
landed  on  the  island  of  Iona,  where  lived  Adamnus,  the  abbot 
of  the  celebrated  convent,  and  the  head  of  the  oldest  theological 
school  of  northern  Europe.  He  wrote  down  the  account  of 
the  shipwrecked  wanderer,  and  in  the  year  698  presented  it 
to  King  Alfred  of  Northumberland.  Beda  Yenerabilis  (the 
venerable  Bede)  has  only  given  one  extract  from  that  narrative 
in  his  Historia  ecclesiastica.  Arculfus’  work  displays  the  con¬ 
dition  of  Palestine  at  the  close  of  the  seventh  century,  at  the 
very  rise  of  the  Mohammedan  sway,  and  is  therefore  of  great 

A.D.  722.  St  Willibaldi  Vita ,  seu  Hodoeporicum,3  including 
the  story  of  his  pilgrimage  to  the  Holy  Land,  is  a  wTork  of 
value.  The  author  was  an  assistant  of  Boniface  in  circulating 
the  gospel  through  central  Germany  and  the  valley  of  the 
Danube,  and  in  742  he  was  made  bishop  of  Aichstadt. 

A.D.  870.  Bernardi  Monachi  Sapientis  Itinerarium  ad 
Loca  Sandal  In  the  tenth  century  no  travels  to  the  Holy 
Land  were  written,  so  far  as  we  now  know.  Bernard  found 
at  the  time  of  his  visit  the  Convent  of  John  the  Baptist,  to¬ 
gether  with  many  others  not  specified  by  name,  on  the  Jordan 
near  Jericho.  The  region  could  not  have  been  the  unredeemed 
desert,  therefore,  that  it  now  is. 

1  Itinerarium  B.  Antonini  ex  Museo  Menardi  Julimagi  Andium  (Angers), 
ap.  Petr.  Anri  typogr.  1640  ;  also  in  Ugolini,  Thes.  vii.  under  the  title 
Itinerar.  Antonini  Placentini ,  fol.  mccviii.-mccxxix. 

2  Gretesero,  Ingolstadii,  1619,  in  Mabillon,  Acta  Sanctor.  Ord.  Benedicti , 
ssec.  iii.  P.  ii.  p.  499,  etc. 

3  Mabillon,  Acta  Sctor.  P.  ii.  p.  365  ;  and  Acta  Sanctor.  ed.  Bollandi, 
Juli,  T.  ii.  fol.  485. 

4  Mabill.  ib.  ii.  p.  523,  and  more  in  detail  in  Becueil  de  Voy.  et  Memoires 
de  la  Soc.  degeogr.  Paris,  tom.  iv.  pp.  285-815. 



In  a.d.  1065,  Altmann,  bishop  of  Passau,  and  afterwards 
founder  of  the  Abbey  of  Consecration,  on  the  Danube,  west  of 
Vienna,  journeyed  to  Palestine1  under  the  guidance  of  Gunther, 
bishop  of  Bamberg,  with  several  thousand  laymen  and  some 
representatives  of  the  clergy.  The  pilgrimage  was  not  unat¬ 
tended  with  perils,  and  many  of  the  company  perished.  This 
occurred  shortly  before  the  outbreak  of  the  Crusades  (1096)  ; 
and  the  extracts  relating  to  this  journey,  scattered  through 
several  authors,  and  found  in  the  Acta  Sanctorum. ,  throw  much 
light  upon  the  confused  condition  of  affairs  in  Palestine  during 
the  oppressive  sway  of  the  Seljukian  Turks.2  Altmann  died 
in  1090. 


Brings  us  to  a  more  thorough  acquaintance  with  the  Holy 
Land.  The  accounts  written  before  that  epoch  are  compara¬ 
tively  meagre,  consisting  oftentimes  of  little  else  than  details 
of  distances  and  the  names  of  halting-places.  But  the  Christian 
rule  over  Syria,  extending  from  1099  to  1291 — the  control  of 
Christian  kings  over  Cyprus  and  Crete  to  a  much  later  period, 
in  the  former  till  1486 — the  commercial  efforts  of  the  Genoese 
and  Venetians — the  possession  of  Rhodes  from  1310  to  1522, 
and  later  still  of  Malta  by  the  Knights  of  the  order  of  St  John, 
the  arch-enemies  of  the  Turks, — tended  to  make  Palestine  more 
and  more  accessible,  and  to  open  it  to  the  knowledge  of  Europe. 
The  historical  authorities  of  that  period,  collected  in  the  Gesta 
Dei  per  Francos ,  are  a  rich  storehouse  of  material  illustrative 
of  the  geography  of  the  Holy  Land.  To  the  period  of  which 
I  now  speak  belong  William  of  Tyre,  Jacob  of  Vitri,  Fulcher 
of  Chartres,  Marin  Sanudo  of  Venice,  Saewulf  the  Anglo- 
Saxon,  and  others. 

A.D.  1096-1124.  Fulcheri  Carnotensis3  Gesta  per egrinan- 
tium  Francorum  cum  armis  Ilierusalem  pergentium.  Fulcher, 
a  monk  of  Chartres,  accompanied  Duke  Robert  of  Normandy 

1  De  B.  Altmann,  Ep.  Pataviensi  apud  Gottwicenses  in  Austria ,  in  Act. 
Sctor.  ed.  Bollandist.  Augusti,  T.  ii.  pp.  356-376  ;  Buckinger,  Geschich.  des 
Fiirstenthums  Passau ,  1816,  pp.  129-137. 

2  Fr.  Wilken,  Gesch.  der  Kreutzzige ,  Pt.  i.  pp.  39-41. 

3  In  Gesta  Dei  per  Francos ,  ed.  Bongars,  Hanov.  fol.  1611,  pp.  381-440. 



in  the  first  Crusade.  His  account  extends  as  late  as  to  the 
year  1124,  and  contains  valuable  material  relating  not  only 
to  Syria  and  Palestine,  but  to  the  northern  portion  of  Arabia 

A.D.  1102-1103.  Saewulfi  1  Relatio  de  peregrinatione  ad 
Hierosolymam  et  terram  sanctam ;  a  writer,  otherwise  unknown, 
who  seems,  according  to  D’Avezac’s  researches,  to  have  been  an 
Anglo-Saxon,  and  whose  name  Saewulfus  may  mean  Wolf  of 
the  Sea  Rovers.  He  finds  three  hundred  monks  living  in  the 
Convent  of  St  Saba  near  the  Dead  Sea,  and  three  monasteries 
on  Mount  Tabor. 

A.D.  1175.  Gerhardi  Frederici  I.  in  AEgyptum  et  Syriam 
ad  Saladinum  Legati  Itinerarium1 2 3  The  short  but  admirable 
statement  of  the  route  taken  by  the  close  observer,  Gerhard, 
Vicedominus  Argentinensis,  which  differed  from  the  routes 
usually  taken  by  pilgrims,  passing  as  it  did  from  Egypt  to 
Sinai,  Bostra,  Damascus,  Sidon,  Jerusalem,  Askelon,  and  to 
Egypt  again,  is  incorporated  in  the  tenth  chapter  of  the  seventh 
book  of  the  Chronica  Slavorum. 

A.D.  1182-1185.  Willermi  Tyrensis  Historia  Rerum  in 
partibus  transmarinis  gestarum ,  libri  xxiii.  William,  the  most 
learned  and  the  most  eminent  of  the  men  who  wrote  the  his¬ 
tory  of  the  Crusades,  was  elevated  in  1174  to  the  bishopric 
of  Tyre.  He  has  left  us  a  graphic  picture,  full  of  truth  and 
merit,  of  the  geographical  character  of  the  country  as  it  pre¬ 
sented  itself  to  him  :  he  seems  to  have  himself  been  a  Syrian. 
Cotemporaneous  with  him  is  the  work  of  a  Cretan  pilgrim, 
Phocas  by  name,  who  long  lived  the  life  of  a  recluse  on  the 
island  of  Patmos.  His  treatise,  bearing  date  1185,  and  called 
Joannes  Phocas  de  Locis  Sanctis  ( Acta  Sanctor.  Map.  tom.  ii.  1), 
is  worthy  of  examination,  as  a  production  entirely  independent 
of  the  accounts  given  by  the  crusaders.  It  contains,  more¬ 
over,  very  good  notices  of  the  sacred  localities. 

A.D.  1220.  Jacobi  de  Vitriaeo,  Acconiensis  Episcopi, 

1  In  Recueil  de  Voy.  et  de  Memoires  publ.  p.  la  Societe  de  geographie, 
Paris  1839,  T.  iv. ;  Relation  des  Voy.  de  Saeivulf, \  p.  Fr.  Michel,  Th.  Wright, 
et  D’Avezac,  pp.  817-854. 

2  Chronica  Helmoldi  Presbyteri  et  Arnoldi  Abbatis  Lubecenses ,  ed.  II. 
Bangertus,  Lubecse  1659,  lib.  vii.  c.  10,  pp.  516-525. 

3  Gesta  Dei  per  Francos ,  l.c.  i.  fol.  629-1046. 



Ilistoria  Hierosolimitcina.  Capitula  centum}  Jacob  of  Vitri, 
bom  in  the  neighbourhood  of  Paris,  took  part  in  the  Crusades, 
became  bishop  of  Akka  (Acre),  and  ranks  after  William  of  Tyre 
as  one  of  the  most  eminent  authors  of  his  time.  He  describes 
with  a  very  free  pen  the  scene  where  the  wars  of  the  Crusades 
were  then  transpiring,  and  gives  the  first  physical  picture  of 
the  country  which  we  possess,  grounded  upon  actual  observa¬ 
tion.  His  description  of  the  natural  history  and  characteristic 
geographical  features  is  therefore  not  without  value.  See 
Capit.  82-91. 

A.D.  1306-1321.  Marin  Sanudo,  named  Torsellus,  Liber 
Secretorwn  Fidelium  Crucis  de  Terrce  Sanctce  recap  eratione  et 
conservatione ,  libri  iii.1 2 3  The  worthy  Venetian,  Marin  Sanudo, 
after  the  loss  of  Jerusalem,  spent  the  greater  part  of  his  life  in 
making  efforts  to  assist  the  regaining  of  the  sacred  soil  by 
means  of  a  Christian  army.  From  his  youth  up,  he  tells  us, 
he  had  cast  his  eyes  towards  the  Terra  Sancta.  Five  times  he 
traversed  the  Levant  in  person,  and  collected  all  the  knowledge 
that  was  attainable  regarding  the  lands  of  the  Saracens.  With 
Venetian  ships  he  examined  the  whole  coast  of  Palestine,  in 
order  to  discover  what  point  would  be  most  available  for  a  fleet 
to  be  sheltered,  and  for  any  army  to  land  successfully.  In 
1306  he  began  to  record  the  results  of  his  observations;  in 
1321  he  finished  it,  and  laid  it,  in  connection  with  the  four 
maps  which  accompanied  it — one  of  the  Orbis  terrarum,  one 
of  the  Terra  Sancta,  one  of  the  Mare  Syrium,  and  a  plan  of 
Acca — before  Pope  John  xxn.  and  the  most  prominent  of  the 
kings  of  Europe,  hoping  thereby  to  raise  them  to  a  new  effort 
to  recover  the  Holy  Land.  To  no  purpose  indeed :  but  his 
work  remains  as  an  interesting  monument  of  the  condition  of 
biblical  geography  at  that  time,  and  the  most  complete  mono¬ 
graph  which  the  middle  ages  have  given  us  on  any  such  theme 
as  that ;  very  incomplete,  it  is  true,  and  in  the  third  part  only  a 
compilation,  but  as  a  first  effort,  not  without  merit. 

A.D.  1307.  Haithoni  Armeni  Ilistoria  orientalist  Other 

1  Gesta  Dei  per  Francos ,  l.c.  i.  fol.  1051-1149.  See  Merisel,  Bibl.  hist. 
vol.  ii.  P.  ii.  pp.  279-282. 

2  In  Gesta  Dei  per  Francos.  See  Orientalis  Historic,  tom.  ii.  Hanov. 
1011,  fol.  1-281. 

3  Ed.  1671,  quarto. 



men  of  that  time,  too,  filled  with  similar  projects  for  awakening 
again  the  spirit  which  had  led  to  the  first  Crusade,  did  much 
towards  circulating  facts  regarding  the  Holy  Land.  Among 
them  may  be  mentioned  the  well-known  Armenian  Christian 
Prince  Haithon,  who  had  entered  a  convent  at  Cyprus,  and 
who,  at  the  request  of  Pope  Clement  v.,  went  to  France  in 
1307,  to  seek  co-operation  in  another  expedition  to  recover 
the  Holy  Sepulchre.  Yet,  of  all  the  accounts  which  have 
come  from  men  of  this  kind,  Sanudo’s  is  altogether  the  most 
valuable.  But  all  these  narratives  were  held  in  high  considera¬ 
tion  in  Europe,  and  they  did  very  much  to  make  the  people 
familiar  with  the  character  of  the  Bible  lands.  These  narra¬ 
tives  were  read  with  great  avidity,  and  they  were  often  appended 
to  works  of  a  very  different  nature ;  from  their  own  law  books,1 
for  example. 

1283.  Brocardi  (Borcardi,  Burchardi)  Locorum  Terrce 
Sanctce  exactissima  Description2  This  work  was  translated  into 
German.3  Robinson,  who  has  carefully  examined  the  many 
editions  of  this  work,  remarks  that  it  appears  to  have  been  a 
labour  of  love,  written  in  a  convent  by  one  who  had  returned 
from  the  Holy  Land,  so  often  was  it  copied  and  annotated  by 
the  hands  of  monks,  and  so  much  resemblance  is  there  in  all 
the  various  transcripts.  And  the  work,  as  Busching  justly 
said,  was  worthy  of  all  this  favour :  for  it  gave  not  merely 
accurate  names  of  places  and  tables  of  distance,  correct  pic¬ 
tures  of  the  country  and  people ;  but  it  portrayed  with  fidelity 
the  natural  productions  of  the  land,  though  without  giving 
their  names.  Its  special  value,  however,  is  to  be  ascribed  to  its 
chronological  statements ;  for,  as  Deycks  correctly  remarks,  his 
account,  coming  at  a  time  when  the  Christian  jurisdiction  over 
Palestine  had  ceased,  opened  up  the  whole  political  status  of 
the  country  to  view.  The  difficulties,  chronological  and  bio¬ 
graphical,  encountered  in  this  author  have  been  critically 
examined  by  Beckmann.4  The  work  of  Brocardus  has  been 

1  Anthon.  Matthsei,  Analecta  veteris  sevi ,  tom.  ii.  p.  25,  etc. 

2  Yenet.  1519  ;  in  Simon  Gryneus,  Nov.  Orbis ,  Basil  1532,  fol.  298-329. 

3  In  the  Reyssbuch  des  heil.  Landes ,  Frankfort  1548,  Pt.  i.  p.  464,  ed. 
of  1609,  fol.  pp.  854-875  ;  comp.  Robinson,  Bib.  Researches ,  ii.  538. 

4  John  Beckmann,  Literatur  der  altern  Reisebeschreibungen ,  vol.  ii.  p.  1, 
Gottingen  1809,  No.  60,  pp.  31-78. 



frequently  abridged  ;  the  most  successful  effort  to  do  so  is  that 
accomplished  in  the  sixteenth  century  by  Adricliomius.1 

Of  the  treatises  on  the  history  of  the  Crusades,  the  cele¬ 
brated  work  of  Michaud2  has  contributed  but  little  to  the  geo¬ 
graphy  of  the  subject ;  Remand’s  supplementary  volumes  are 
far  more  valuable ;  and  Wilken’s  and  von  Hammer’s  master 
works  on  this  subject  are  truly  admirable. 



After  the  Holy  Land  had  passed  into  the  hands  of  the 
Saracens,  the  interest  felt  in  it  did  not  die  out  in  the  West ;  it 
extended  itself  rather  to  the  outlying  and  now  opened  districts 
farther  east.  We  learn  from  the  records  of  pilgrimages  under¬ 
taken  in  the  fourteenth  and  fifteenth  centuries,  that  a  change 
had  begun  :  the  journeys  to  the  Orient  had  begun  to  lose  their 
exclusively  religious  character,  and  to  be  in  a  measure  secu¬ 
larized.  They  extended  in  some  instances  as  far  east  as  to  India, 
and  were  undertaken  sometimes  in  a  spirit  of  mere  romantic 

1356.  Johannes  de  Montevilla.  At  the  head  of  all  the 
works  which  come  under  this  division,  is  that  volume  of  Travels 
which  was  written  by  Sir  John  Maundeville,  composed  in 
English  or  French3  at  Liege,4  in  the  year  1356,  and  giving  an 
account  of  his  thirty  years’  wanderings  in  the  Orient.  The  work 
was  soon  translated  into  Latin,  and  into  many  of  the  European 
languages,  enlarged  by  the  engrafting  of  many  idle  tales  from 
other  hands,  and  adopted  by  popular  consent  as  one  of  the 
most  delightful  books  of  the  age,  containing,  in  addition  to  its 
geographical  statements  about  the  Holy  Land,  a  whole  com¬ 
pendium  of  mirabilia  mundi.  His  romantic  and  poetical  turn 

1  Christ.  Adrichomius,  Theatrum  Terrx  Sanctx  Colonix ,  1590. 

2  Michaud,  Histoire  des  Croisades,  5  vols.  under  his  name,  but  elabo¬ 
rated  by  Reinaud ;  Bibliographic  des  Croisades ,  2  vols.  ;  Fr.  Wilken, 
Gesch.  der  Kreutzziige ,  1807. 

3  J.  0.  Halliwell,  The  Voyage  and  Travaille  of  Sir  John  Maundeville , 
Lond.  1839,  in  Reissbuch  des  heil.  Landes,  1609,  i.  fol.  759-812. 

4  Dr  E.'  Schonborn,  Bibliographische  Untersuchungen  iiber  J.  Maundeville , 
Breslau  1840,  p.  22;  Rob.  Bib.  Researches ,  i.  p.  xxiii. ;  J.  Gorres,  Teutsche 
Volksbiicher ,  p.  62. 



of  mind  has  not  injured  the  value  of  those  portions  which 
give  simple  facts,  as  Robinson  found  after  carefully  following 
in  his  footsteps.  Halliwell  and  Schonborn,  too,  have  shown 
that  a  great  many  passages  in  Maundeville  which  were  supposed 
to  be  untrustworthy,  are  additions  which  have  been  grafted 
upon  the  original  work.  Yet  with  all  this,  and  notwithstanding 
the  closeness  of  his  observation,  he  was  too  much  possessed  with 
the  taste  of  his  age  for  the  marvellous,  to  be  always  best  pleased 
with  the  simple  truth.  He  gave  a  book  to  Europe  which  had 
just  the  qualities  which  the  public  mind  demanded,  and  he 
found  therefore  a  large  and  an  admiring  public.  Yet  it  cannot 
be  denied  that  the  chapters  which  relate  to  Palestine  (vi.-xi.) 
are  instructive. 

A.H.  1336-1341  and  1350.  Ludolphi  de  Suchen  Libellus 
de  Itinere  ad  Terrain  Sanctam.1  This  work  is  declared  by 
Robinson  to  be  the  most  truthful  of  all  the  itineraries  which 
have  come  down  from  the  fourteenth  century,  notwithstanding 
its  touch  of  the  marvellous.  The  many  manuscript  and  printed 
copies  of  Ludolph’s  work  (not  Rudolph),  with  names  and  dates, 
have  made  it  difficult  to  arrive  at  the  simple  facts  of  the  life 
of  this  excellent  Westphalian  pilgrim,  the  most  celebrated — as 
his  editor,  a  fellow-countryman,  has  said2 — of  all  the  seventeen 
Germans  who,  in  those  earlier  days,  ventured  to  encounter  the 
difficulties  which  lay  in  the  road  to  Palestine.  As  mentioned 
above,  his  name  was  not  Rudolph ;  and  his  absence  did  not 
extend  from  1336  to  1350,  as  even  Panzer  supposed,  but  he 
made  two  separate  journeys :  the  first  in  1336,  and  extending 
over  five  years ;  the  next  in  1350.  This  he  himself  states  in 
his  dedication  to  Baldwin  of  Steinfurt,  bishop  of  Paderborn, 
the  diocese  to  which  his  own  parish  church  of  Suchen  belonged. 
He  compares  many  objects  which  he  saw  in  the  East  with  those 
around  his  own  home:  Mount  Tabor,  for  instance,  with  his  own 
Isenberge;  the  Lebanon  forests  with  Osning  wood:3  he  finds 

1  Robinson,  Bib.  Researches,  ii.  540;  Latin  ed.  Yenet.  without  date; 
the  oldest  German  edition,  Von  dem  gelobten  Lande  und  Weg  gegen  Jeru¬ 
salem,  1477.  See  Panzer,  Annal.  1788,  No.  82,  p.  100. 

2  Dr  Ferdin.  Deycks,  Ueber  dltere  Pilgerfahrten  nach  Jerusalem,  mit 
besonderer  Rucksicht  auf  Ludolpli  von  Suchen  Reisebuch  des  heiligen  Landes , 
Miinster  1848,  p.  9,  etc. 

3  De  Suchen,  in  Libell.  c.  118. 



rivers  which  remind  him  of  the  Rhine,  and  buildings  which 
suggest  the  cathedral  of  Cologne ;  the  Turks  he  compares  with 
the  Frisians.  He  wrote  his  work  originally  in  Latin,  assum¬ 
ing  the  title  of  parochialis  ecclesice  in  Suchen  rector.  In  his 
book  he  makes  the  open  declaration,  that  he  had  not  seen 
all  that  he  describes,  but  had  drawn  much  from  historical 
sources :  yet  what  he  saw  for  himself  is  a  sufficient  testi¬ 
mony  of  his  assiduous  patience  and  unwearied  pains  to  get  at 
the  truth.1  The  various  editions  in  German  dialects2  have 
called  out  a  great  deal  of  scholarly  effort  among  philologists; 
and  the  contents  of  his  work  have  proved  a  rich  mine  of  geo¬ 
graphical  knowledge,  particularly  in  that  department  which 
relates  to  the  neighbourhood  of  the  Mediterranean. 

A.D.  1336.  Gulielmi  de  Baldensel  Hodoeporicon  ad  Terrain 
Sanctam.  A  German  of  Lower  Saxony.  His  name  is  more 
correctly  written  Boldensleve  or  Alvensleben.  According  to 
Beckmann,3  his  pilgrimage  was  contemporaneous  with  that  of 
his  countryman  Ludolph.  His  account  is  not  without  value, 
but  less  instructive  than  that  one  to  which  I  have  just  alluded. 

There  follows  a  long  list  of  records  of  travel  to  the  Holy 
Land,  whose  worth  is  not  such  as  to  make  it  necessary  to  refer 
to  them  in  detail.  They  are  the  productions  of  men  of  great 
diversities  of  gifts,  as  well  as  of  social  standing.  Some  of  them 
have  been  incorporated  in  the  Beissbuch  des  heiligen  Landes ; 
some  in  other  collections,  those  of  Ramusio,  Hackluyt,  Ugolinus, 
Bergeron,  Paulus,  etc. ;  some  have  appeared  separately.  Among 
the  latter  may  be  included  that  of  Frescobaldi,  1384,  which 
Robinson  has  omitted  in  his  list.  They  mostly  repeat  the 
statements  of  travellers  who  had  preceded  them ;  and  for  geo¬ 
graphical  purposes  they  have  no  special  value,  although  from  a 
literary  and  antiquarian  point  of  view  they  are  not  without 
interest.  It  is  possible  that  one  of  these,  which  has  never  been 
traced — the  narrative  of  a  certain  Roberto,  who  visited  the 
Holy  Land  in  1458 — would  have  been  more  valuable;  but 
although  Count  Giulio  Porro  states  expressly  that  it  is  deposited 

1  Reissbuch  des  Tieil.  Landes ,  1609,  i.  fol.  813-854,  falsely  called 

2  In  Deycks,  p.  28,  etc.  to  61. 

3  Respecting  him,  see  J.  Beckmann,  Literatur  der  dltern  Reisebeschr.  ii. 
2,  pp.  226-237. 



at  Milan,  it  has  been  sought  for  in  vain.  Its  title  was,  Itineraria 
facta  'per  lo  Magnifico  Cavaliere  Signor  Duo  Roberto  cle  San 
Saverio ,  Capitano  da  Jerusalem  a  Sancta  Katerina  del  A.  1458. 
It  was  only  at  the  close  of  the  fifteenth  century  that  we  have 
accounts  of  really  great  excellence,  such  as  those  of  Tucher 
1479-80,  Breydenbach  1483-84,  and  Fabri  of  the  same  date, 
whose  records  I  have  already  had  occasion  to  refer  to  in  the 
description  of  the  Sinai  Peninsula.  They  have  the  same  value 
for  Palestine  as  for  Arabia  Petraca.  To  the  list  already  cited 
I  must  add,  with  special  commendation,  the  account  of  Felix 
Fabri  of  Ulm,  which  Robinson  considers  preferable  in  point  of 
exactness  to  the  well-known  work  of  Bernard  de  Breydenbach, 
Dean  of  the  Mayence  Cathedral.  A  new  edition  of  Fabri’ s 
narrative  was  published  in  Stuttgard  in  1843  by  the  Literary 
Association  of  that  place.  The  work  in  its  new  form  was  en¬ 
riched  by  the  laborious  care  of  Professor  Hasler1  of  Ulm,  who 
also  read  an  admirable  paper  on  Fabri  and  his  work,  at  a  meet¬ 
ing  of  German  philologists  held  at  Dresden  in  October  1844. 



Subsequently  to  the  epoch  in  which  the  works  hitherto 
alluded  to  fall,  there  came  a  change  in  the  character2  of  visits 
made  to  Palestine.3  They  not  only  lost  a  portion  of  that  pious 
simplicity  which  had  marked  them,  and  that  belief  in  the  expia¬ 
tory  value  of  the  pilgrimage  to  those  shores;  but  they  began  to  be 
affected  by  the  altered  political  relations  of  the  Eastern  Powers, 
and  especially  by  the  possession  of  Constantinople  by  the  Turks, 
and  the  gradual  encroachment  of  the  Ottoman  Empire  upon 
European  soil.  Necessity  and  curiosity  both  prompted  men  to  see 
what  were  the  manners  and  institutions  of  this  new  and  formid¬ 
able  race,  and  what  the  condition  and  character  of  the  country 

1  Fratris  Felicis  Fabri,  Evagatorium  in  Terras  Sanctx ,  Arabix  et  Egypti 
Peregrinationem ,  edidit  Cunradus  Dietericus  Hasler,  Gymnasii  Regii  Ulmani 
Professor,  vol.  i.  ii.,  in  Bibliothek  des  liter arischen  Vereins  in  Stuttgart ,  1843, 
vol.  ii.  pp.  1-480,  and  iii.  1-545. 

2  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  541 ;  F.  Deycks,  p.  25. 

3  The  English  reader  will  find  the  characteristics  of  the  various  epochs 
of  travel  to  the  Holy  Land  graphically  summed  up  in  the  opening  pages 
of  Pressense’s  Land  of  the  Gospel. — Ed. 


where  they  held  sovereign  power.  This  induced  great  numbers 
of  knights,  lords,  and  princes  to  make  pilgrimages  to  the  East ; 
and  their  accounts — those,  for  instance,  of  the  Count  Palatine ; 
the  Count  of  Nassau,  1495;  the  Duke  of  Pomerania,  1496;  the 
Prince  Radziwill,  1583;  and  Baron  Graeben,  1675 — accumu¬ 
lated  in  number,  yet  without  a  proportionate  increase  in  value, 
owing  to  the  complete  ignorance  of  their  authors  about  what 
had  been  seen  and  reported  by  preceding  travellers.  The  period 
of  the  Reformation  seems  to  have  given  a  spur  to  pilgrimages 
to  the  Holy  Land  among  those  who  remained  faithful  to  the 
Catholic  Church.  The  complete  ascendancy  of  the  Venetian 
marine,  and  the  extensive  commerce  of  Venice  with  the  East, 
contributed  to  the  ease  and  the  security  with  which  travellers 
could  penetrate  the  Orient;  and  we  find,  accordingly,  that  there 
were  many  who,  actuated  by  curiosity,  sailed  from  Venice  direct 
for  places  as  remote  as  India  and  Persia  even.  The  travels  of 
men  of  an  adventurous  turn  of  mind  do  not  seem  to  have  been 
restricted  to  the  Levant,  to  the  well-known  and  often-traversed 
scenes  of  Bible  story ;  but  in  a  larger  scientific  spirit  than  had 
as  yet  been  applied,  to  Palestine  and  Egypt,  they  ventured  to 
explore  a  much  wider  field.  We  find  Italians,  Frenchmen, 
Englishmen,  and  especially  Germans,  making  extensive  travels 
during  the  sixteenth  and  seventeenth  centuries  to  the  East,  in 
the  course  of  which  they  usually  touched  Syria  and  Palestine, 
without  paying  any  special  attention  to  those  more  familiar 
lands.  Among  these  I  may  mention  the  names  of  Pierre  Belon, 
1546-49;  L.  Rauwolf,  1573-76;  Della  Valle,  1614;  Olearius, 
1635;  Thevenot,  1652;  Tavernier,  1665;  Chardin,  1664;  and 
Tournefort,  1700.  This  brings  us  down  to  the  time  when 
Pococke,  Hasselquist,  and  Niebuhr  opened  a  new  era  in  the 
geography  of  the  Holy  Land.  Among  those  worthy  of  parti¬ 
cular  enumeration  are  the  following,  which  I  cite  to  the  exclu¬ 
sion  of  many  whose  contents  are  meagre,  and  whose  value  is  to 
be  appreciated  by  the  bibliographer  solely. 

1507-1508.  Martini  a  Baumgarten  Peregrinatio ;  according 
to  Robinson,  a  collection  of  brief  papers  from  the  hand  of  a 
competent  observer. 

1546-49.  Pierre  Belon  du  Mans,  Observations  de  plusieurs 
singularity  et  choses  memorables  trouvees  en  Grece ,  Asie,  Judee , 

etc .,  en  trois  livres,  Paris  1554,  4to.  In  this  work  (livr.  ii.  ch. 



Ixxiii.-cxii.  fol.  135-151)  are  to  be  found  a  good  topographical 
description  of  Palestine,  and  a  trustworthy  account  of  its  natural 
history.  P.  Belon,  a  French  physician,  is  well  known  as  a 
learned  and  close  observer. 

Bonifacii  a  Bagusio  Liber  de  perenni  cultu  Terra?  Sanctce , 
Venetiis  1573,  8vo.  The  work  of  the  Franciscan  monk,  now 
only  known  by  Quaresmius’1  quotations,  is  mentioned  by 
Robinson,  who  failed  to  find  any  traces  of  it.  Quaresmius 
says  of  its  author,  u  Vir  insignis  Apostolicus  Prmdicator,  post 
Stagni  Episcopus,  qui  per  novem  annos  Guardianus  officio  in 
sancta  civitate  Jerusalem  magna  cum  laude  functus  est,”  etc. 
Tobler  has  also  sought  in  vain  for  this  work,  in  order  to  use  it 
in  his  own  zealous  and  exhaustive  studies  on  Palestine ;  and  I 
have  searched  for  it  in  the  Library  of  St  Mark  in  Venice,  in 
the  Imperial  Library  of  Vienna,  and  in  that  of  Wolfenbuttel, 
which  is  so  rich  in  Italian  works.  Its  great  rarity  seems  to 
have  precluded  any  further  use  of  it  than  that  made  by 
Quaresmius,  who  speaks  of  its  great  value.  It  is  suggested, 
therefore,  as  a  fit  object  of  future  search. 

1573—76.  Leonharti  Rauwolfen,  der  Artzney  Doctorn  und 
bestellten  Medici  zu  Augsburg,  Aigentliche  Beschreibung  der 
Raiss ,  so  er  von  dieser  Zeit  gegen  Auffgang  in  die  Morgenlander , 
etc.,  selbs  volbracht ,  3  Parts,  Augsburg  1582,  4to.2  The  con¬ 
clusion  of  the  second  part,  chap.  xii.  fol.  273,  and  the  whole 
of  the  third  part  of  this  excellent  work,  is  to  be  specially 
recommended.  Rau wolfs  investigations  into  the  natural 
history  of  Palestine,  and  especially  his  botany,  have  placed 
him  very  high ;  and  he  well  prepared  the  way  for  the  later 
efforts  of  Tournefort  and  Hasselquist.  Many  who  have  fol¬ 
lowed  him  have  drawn  largely  from  him.  Breuning’s 3  work 
is  an  example.  I  pass  over  the  enumeration  of  his  copyists. 

1616-1625.  Francisci  Quaresmii,  Historica  theologicci  et 
moralis  Terras  Sanctce  elucidatio ,  2  tom.  fol.  Antwerp  1639.4 
This  work  is  of  less  value  in  attaining  a  knowledge  of  the 

O  <D 

1  Fr.  Quaresmius,  Terrx  Sanctx  elucidatio ,  etc.,  Antwerpise  1639, 
tom.  i.  ;  Prsef.  p.  xxxv.  See  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  542. 

2  J.  Beckmann,  Liter atur  der  alter n  Reisebeschreibungen,Pt.  i.  1,  pp.  1-21. 

3  J.  Beckmann,  i.a.l.  ii.  pp.  269-288. 

4  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  544 ;  K.  v.  Raumer,  Pal.  p.  8 ;  J.  Beck¬ 
mann,  i.a.l.  i.  p.  232. 



country  than  of  the  history  of  the  Catholic  Church  there  ; 
and  although  very  circumstantial  and  diffuse,  yet  not  to  be 
taken  as  a  work  of  sufficient  importance  to  be  the  standard  of 
comparison  for  other  works  of  similar  ecclesiastical  scope,  such 
as  those  of  Zuallart,  1586;  Dandini,  1596  ;  Cotovicus,1  1598; 
and  Doubdan,  1651.  Of  these  I  need  not  speak  in  detail, 
and  will  only  say  that  that  of  Doubdan,2 3  canon  of  St  Denys, 
although  overpraised  by  Chateaubriand,  is  a  work  of  great 
learning ;  and  that  by  Dandini,  a  Papal  legate  to  the  Maronites/’ 
is  valuable  in  the  portions  which  relate  to  the  Lebanon. 
Zuallart  has  interesting  original  drawings,  charts,  and  maps, 
which  have  not  seldom  been  closely  copied  by  his  successors, 
Cotovic  among  them  :  even  in  the  single  Spanish  itinerary  of 
any  importance — that  of  Castello,  1656,  published  at  Madrid — 
Zuallart’ s  drawings  are  reproduced. 

1614-26.  Pietro  della  Yalle,  Viaggi,  etc.  Sufficiently  well 
known  as  a  highly  esteemed  oriental  traveller,  whose  researches 
in  Egypt,  Persia,  and  India  have  been  praised  even  by  Goethe, 
but  whose  account  of  Palestine  is  confined  to  a  sin  ode  letter 

*  O 

written  in  1616.4  Robinson  speaks  of  him  as  light  and  super¬ 
ficial  ;  von  Paumer  as  soundly  catholic  in  his  faith,  and  yet 
frivolous.  I  have  already  made  use  of  his  valuable  data  in 
treating  of  the  Sinai  Peninsula.  In  respect  of  learning, 
literary  excellence,  and  artistic  character,  his  merits  are  not 
small.  He  brought  to  Europe  the  first  copy  of  the  Samaritan 
Pentateuch  which  was  known  there — the  one  now  in  the 
possession  of  the  Imperial  Library  of  Paris. 

1646-47.  Baltli.  de  Monconys,  Journal  des  Voy .,  Paris 
1695  ;  sec.  Partie  en  Syrie ,  etc.  In  this  instructive  work,  the 
eminent  author,  well  known  as  a  mathematician  and  a  physicist, 
describes  his  journey  through  Palestine. 

1  II  devotissimo  Viaggio  da  Gerusalemme  fatto  e  descritto ,  in  sei  Libri  clal 
Sign.  Giovanni  Zuallardo,  Cavaliero  del  Santissimo  Sepolcro  l’anno  1586, 
Roma  1587,  iv. ;  Itinerarium  Hierosolymitanum  et  Sijriacum ,  auctore  Joanne 
Cotovico,  Antwerpiae  1619,  iv. 

2  J.  Doubdan,  Voyage  de  la  Terre  Sainte ,  Paris  1657. 

3  Jerome  Dandini,  Voyage  du  Mont  Liban ,  trad,  de  l’ltalien ,  Paris  1675. 
See  Beckmann,  i.a.l.  ii.  2,  pp.  355-368. 

4  P.  della  Yalle,  German  ed.  Geneva  1674,  Pt.  i.  fob  132-174 ;  original 
ed.  Viaggi ,  Roma  1650-1653,  4  vols. 

YOL.  11. 




1655-59.  Jean  Thevenot,1  Relation  Tun  Voyage  fait  au 
Levant ,  Paris  1665,  containing  an  admirable  account  of  the 
author’s  stay  in  Palestine  and  Syria.  The  works  of  D’Arvieux, 
1658,  and  la  Roque,  1688,  relate — the  valuable  portions  on  the 
Lebanon  excepted — rather  to  the  Arabs  and  to  the  political 
condition  of  the  Levant.  I  must  except  the  journey  of  the  first 
through  Palestine,2  which,  however,  embraces  only  twenty- 
seven  chapters  in  the  second  book  of  his  collected  works. 
The  Travels  of  C.  le  Brun,  1672,  are  very  valuable  on  account 
of  the  drawings  which  the  author,  a  Flemish  artist,  had  an 
opportunity  of  executing  in  the  East.  Their  contents  in  other 
respects  are  not  of  equal  worth.  Nor  are  the  accounts  of  Nau, 
Surius,  1644,  and  others,  deserving  of  special  consideration. 

1697.  Henry  Maundrell,  Journey  from  Aleppo  to  Jerusa¬ 
lem ,  Oxford  1703  ;  the  sixth  edition,  enlarged  and  enriched, 
with  appendices,  Oxford  1740.  Robinson  says  of  him : 
“  Maundrell  was  chaplain  of  the  English  factory  at  Aleppo. 
His  book  is  the  brief  report  of  a  shrewd  and  keen  observer, 
and  still  remains  perhaps  the  best  work  on  those  parts  of  the 
country  through  which  he  travelled.  His  visit  to  Jerusalem 
was  a  hasty  one.”  Yon  Raumer  says  of  his  book  that  it  is  very 
instructive,  calm,  and  trustworthy.  The  unpretending  author 
had  the  intention  of  merely  giving  his  countrymen  a  supple¬ 
ment  to  the  travels  of  his  predecessor  Sandys,3  1610-11,  who 
enjoyed  the  entire  confidence  of  his  countrymen  in  consequence 
of  his  great  accuracy.  The  friends  of  Maundrell  caused  his 
work  to  be  published  at  Oxford. 

1697-98.  A.  Morison,  Relation  historique  cVun  Voyage  au 
Mont  Sinai  et  a  Jerusalem ,  Toul.  1704.  A  cotemporary  of  the 
preceding,  who,  although  not  to  be  placed  as  his  equal,  gave  us 
many  valuable  facts  in  our  study  of  the  Sinai  Peninsula.  The 
work  of  Robert  Clayton,  bishop  of  Clogher,4  is  not  to  be  passed 

1  Thevenot  (i.e.  Jean,  nephew  of  Melechisedek  Thevenot),  Reisebeschrei- 
bung  in  Europa ,  Asia,  und  Afr'ika ,  etc.,  Frankf.  1693,  iv.  ;  after  his  Relation 
Tun  Voyage  et  Suite ,  Paris  1674,  iv. 

2  Laur.  D’Arvieux,  Voy.  dans  la  Palestine ,  etc.,  pub.  par  la  Roque, 
Paris  1717  ;  see  the  Ger.  translation,  Kopen.  and  Leipsig  1853,  Pt.  ii.  1-426, 
from  his  Memoires  du  Chevalier  d'Arvieux,  Paris  1753,  6  vols. 

3  George  Sandys,  Travuiles ,  etc.,  Lond.  1615. 

4  Robert,  Lord  Bishop  of  Clogher,  Journal  from  Grand  Cairo  to  Mount 



without  mention,  although  it  confines  itself  exclusively  to 
Arabia  Petrosa.  The  learned  Paul  Lucas,  who  made  a  hasty 
run  through  Palestine  in  1714,  has  also  left  a  record  of  his 

1722.  Thomas  Shaw,  Travels  in  Barbary  and  in  the  Levant . 
This  work,  which  was  originally  in  the  form  of  special  treatises, 
is  of  especial  value  in  connection  with  the  antiquities,  as  well 
as  the  physical  character  of  Syria,  Phoenicia,  and  the-  Holy 
Land,  and  forms  an  admirable  supplement  to  the  work  of 

1700-23.  Van  Egmond  en  Heyman,  Beizen ,  Leyden  1757  ; 
English  translation  :  Travels ,  London  1759,  2  vols.  Egmond 
was  the  Dutch  ambassador  at  Naples;  John  Heyman  was  a 
professor  of  oriental  languages  in  Leyden.  They  united  their 
accounts,  and  produced  in  their  conjoint  work  one  of  the  best 
treatises  on  Palestine  ever  written. 

1737-40.  Pichard  Pococke,2  Travels  in  the  East ,  Lond. 
3  vols.  fol.  Only  the  second  part  of  this  work  relates  to  Syria 
and  Palestine.  Michaelis,  and  after  him  Posenmiiller  and 
Pobinson,3  have  charged  it  as  a  fault  in  this  thorough  classical 
scholar,  that  he  was  not  as  well  versed  in  Hebrew  as  he  should 
have  been ;  and  they  have  with  justice  complained  of  the 
mixing  up  of  what  he  personally  saw  with  what  he  knew  merely 
by  report,  or  extracted  from  preceding  authors.  This  is  the 
more  reprehensible  in  one  who  must  have  known  how  carefully 
Herodotus  shunned  that  confusion  which  has  so  much  marred 
Pococke’ s  work,  and  brought  it  into  bad  repute.  Yet  there  is 
considerable  value,  notwithstanding,  in  those  parts  of  his  book 
which  are  palpably  the  result  of  his  own  observation. 

1749-53.  Fridr.  Hasselquist,  Reisen  nach  Paldstina ,  edited 
by  Linnaeus,  Postock  1762.  As  the  work  of  a  naturalist  and 
a  disciple  of  Linnaeus,  this  book  is  valuable,  particularly  for  the 
light  which  it  throws  on  the  plants  and  the  animals  of  Palestine. 

Sinai,  translated  from  a  manuscript  by  the  Frefetto  of  Egypt,  etc.,  Lond. 

1  Paul  Lucas,  Voyage  fait  en  1714,  dans  la  Turquie  VAsie,  Syrie, 
Palestine,  etc.,  Amsterdam  1720—8,  tom.  i.  liv.  iii.  pp.  200-273. 

2  Rich.  Pococke,  Travels  in  the  East,  Lond.  1743-1748,  3  vols.  fol. 

3  J.  D.  Michaelis,  Oriental.  Bill.  Pt.  viii.  p.  Ill ;  Rosenmiiller,  Biol. 
Alter,  vol.  i.  p.  85  ;  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  i.  p.  37. 



The  editor  appended  a  supplement  on  the  natural  history  of 
Palestine,  which  Robinson  is  inclined  to  think  the  most  com¬ 
plete  scientific  treatise  on  the  subject  which  has  ever  appeared. 
With  the  help  of  Hasselquist,  who  completed  what  Rauwolf 1 
and  Tournefort  began,  and  with  A.  Russell’s2  carefully  prepared 
list  of  the  oriental  names  applied  to  the  flora  of  the  East, 
augmented  by  the  later  researches  of  Olivier,  the  identity  of 
the  native  appellations  and  the  modern  scientific  terms  can  be 
established,  so  far  as  is  necessary  in  the  study  of  the  geography 
of  the  country.  The  Flora  Palcestina 3  may  be  also  consulted, 
and  the  later  works  of  von  Schubert. 

1754-55.  Stephen  Schultz,  Leitungen  des  Ilochsten  durcli 
Europa ,  Asia ,  Africa ,  Halle  1771-75.  This  author  belongs 
to  the  small  class  of  pilgrim  devotees  who  have  sprung  from 
the  Protestant  ranks,  in  contradistinction  to  the  many  earlier 
Catholics  who  wandered  to  the  mysterious  East.  Most  of  the 
Protestant  travellers  who  explored  Palestine  with  any  care 
during  the  time  now  under  review,  were  actuated  by  scientific 
and  scholarly  considerations,  more  than  by  religious  impulse. 
It  is  only  in  the  most  modern  period  that  religion  and  science 
have  combined,  as  with  Laborde,  Robinson,  von  Schubert,  and 
others,  to  prompt  to  an  exploration  of  the  scenes  of  biblical 

1760- 68.  Abbe  Mariti,  Voyages  dans  lisle  de  Chypre ,  la 
Syrie ,  et  la  Palestine ,  Paris  1791,  T.  i.  and  ii.  This  work 
contains,  with  many  repetitions  of  what  had  been  told  before, 
particularly  in  relation  to  the  island  of  Cyprus,  some  useful  data 
regarding  Palestine. 

1761- 67.  Carsten  Niebuhr’s4  Travels  in  Arabia  have  often 
been  drawn  from  in  the  preceding  volume.  This  work  on 
Palestine  appeared  about  a  half  century  subsequently  to  the 

1  Vergleichung  der  Rauwolfschen  Pflanzennamen  mit  denen  in  Limit,  Hist, 
gen.  plant,  in  Beckman  Lit.  der  dltern  Reisebeschr.  Pt.  i.  pp.  13-15. 

2  A.  Russell,  Natural  History  of  Aleppo ,  by  P.  Russell,  trans.  into 
Ger.  by  Gmelin,  Gottingen  1797,  Pt.  i.  sec.  3,  pp.  83-117. 

3  D.  Benedicti  Joh.  Strand,  Sudermanni,  Flora  Palsestina ,  in  Giov. 
Mariti,  Viaggio  da  Gerusalemme  par  le  coste  della  Syria ,  ed.  Livorno  1787, 
tom.  ii.  pp.  191-240. 

4  C.  Niebuhr’s  Reisen  durcli  Syrien  und  Paldstina  nach  Cypern.  This 
includes  Niebuhr’s  astronomical  observations  and  minor  papers.  Hamburgh 



works  which  I  have  hitherto  cited,  and  has  been  skilfully  edited 
by  Gloyer  and  Olshausen.  What  Robinson  says  of  Niebuhr 
is  perfectly  true :  u  lie  is  the  prince  of  eastern  travellers  ; 
exact,  judicious,  and  persevering.”  He  gives  the  details  of  his 
journey  through  Syria  and  Palestine,  with  a  series  of  plans  of 
the  cities  of  the  country,  not  all  of  them  new  to  us,  not  all  of 
them  correct  now,  owing  to  the  changes  of  time ;  and  yet  his 
work,  with  all  its  defects,  is  far  more  valuable  than  the  hasty 
productions  of  many  modern  tourists. 

1783-86.  Volney,1  Voyage  en  Syrie ,  Paris  1787,  2  vols. 
This  work  is  universally  known  for  the  fidelity,  the  apprecia¬ 
tive  illustration  with  which  it  points  the  moral,  political,  and 
religious  condition  of  the  people  whom  he  visited.  It  is  in  the 
form  rather  of  a  series  of  treatises  than  of  a  journal  of  travel, 
or  a  detailed  description  of  local  geographical  features ;  and 
in  this  it  differs  from  the  most  of  its  predecessors.  The  high 
position  where  he  stood  to  survey  the  East,  and  the  consequent 
breadth  of  his  view,  made  his  work  deeply  instructive,  and 
enabled  him  to  present  the  mutual  relation  of  nature  and  history 
there  in  a  striking  light.  His  great  modesty  caused  him  to 
keep  himself  very  much  in  the  background,  and  his  work  con¬ 
sequently  lacks  those  details  regarding  his  personal  route,  whose 
absence  is  always  regretted  by  the  careful  reader. 

1792-98.  W.  G.  Browne,2  Travels  in  Africa ,  Egypt,  and 
Syria ,  London  1799.  This  work,  admirable  as  it  is,  yet  con¬ 
tains  only  a  few  brief  chapters  relative  to  the  author’s  journey 
through  Palestine. 

Alexander  Russell’s  Natural  History  of  Aleppo ,  a  true 
classic  on  Syria,  and  valuable  in  its  Palestine  portion  also,  was 
edited  by  Patrick  Russell,  and  translated  into  German  by  Gmelin 
of  Gottingen.  It  closes  the  works  of  the  eighteenth  century 
relating  to  this  subject  in  a  worthy  manner. 

1  E.  F.  Yolney’s  Reise  nach  Syrien  und  AEgypten  in  1783-1785,  Ger. 
ed.  Jena  1788. 

2  W.  G.  Browne’s  Reisen  in  Afrika ,  AEgypten,  und  Syrien ,  1792-98, 
Berlin  1801. 




Before  we  pass  to  the  consideration  of  the  Christian  writers 
of  Europe  who  have  made  Palestine  the  object  of  their  inves¬ 
tigations  during  the  present  century,  it  is  necessary  to  refer 
briefly  to  a  certain  class  of  works,  which,  although  not  referring 
directly  to  the  results  of  personal  investigation,  are  yet  valuable, 
as  digests  of  what  had  been  observed  by  others,  and  as  studies 
preparatory  to  the  prosecution  of  personal  inquiry.  In  many 
cases  I  need  mention  them  merely  by  name.  They  comprise 
such  authors  as  Mohammed  el  Fergani,1  the  astronomer,  who 
wrote  a.d.  833  ;  Xsstachri,  his  contemporary ;  Ebn  Haukal  and 
Masudi,  dating  from  the  tenth  century ;  Edrisi  and  Abdallatif, 
middle  of  the  twelfth  ;  Boahedin2 3  and  his  learned  editor,  end 
of  the  twelfth  century ;  Gakuti,  middle  of  the  thirteenth ;  Ebn 
Batuta,  1324;  Ibn  el  Wardi  at  the  beginning,  and  Abulfeda 
at  the  middle,  of  the  fourteenth  century  ;  and  Macrizi ;3  in  the 
first  half  of  the  fifteenth  century.  These  writers  have  all  of 
them  furnished  more  or  less  valuable  geographical  details  ;  but 
the  most  complete  in  that  respect  is  the  Syrian  prince  of 
Hamath,4  in  the  Lebanon.  Mejr  ed-Bin’s  History  of  Jerusa¬ 
lem ,  translated  from  the  Arabic  into  French  by  the  accom¬ 
plished  J.  von  Hammer,  and  published  in  the  Fundgruben  des 
Orients ,  vol.  ii.  pp.  81,  118,  375,  is  praised  by  Robinson  as  the 
most  complete  description  of  the  Holy  City  ever  written  in  the 
Arabic  language. 

1  Muhamedis  Alfergani,  Elementa  Astronomica,  arabice  et  latine  cum 
notis ,  etc.,  Opera  Jacobi  Gobi,  Amstelodami  1669. 

2  Bahaddini  Vita  Saladini,  ed.  Alb.  Schultens,  ejusdem  Index  Geo- 
grapliicus ,  Lugdini  Batavor.  1732. 

3  In  Taki  Eddin  Ahmed  Makrizi,  Ilistoire  des  Sultans  MamelouJes  de 
VEgypte,  trad,  de  l’Arabe  par  Quatremere,  Paris  1837,  iv.,  contains  very 
important  contributions  to  the  knowledge  of  Palestine. 

4  Abulfedse  Tabula  Syrise,  ed.  B.  Koehler,  etc.  Lips.  1765;  cum 
excerpto  geograpliico  ex  Ibn  el  AVardii  Geographia  et  Historia  naturali. 
See  also  Rosenmuller,  Handb.  d.  Alterthumslc.  i.  pp.  41-58  ;  above  all,  see 
Reinaud,  in  Geographia  T  About feda,  textus  1840,  et  traduct.  Paris  1848, 
tom.  i.  I nt rod. 



New  works  upon  Palestine,  from  the  hands  of  Arabian  and 
oriental  writers,  either  do  not  exist  at  all,  or  are  of  very 
little  importance.  The  second  improved  edition  of  Abulfeda’s 
Tabula  Syria,  which  was  to  have  appeared  at  Oxford  under 
the  editorial  care  of  Koehler,  has  not  appeared.  Koehler’s  own 
work,  the  manuscript  of  which  remained  in  the  library  of 
Lubec,  his  birth-place,  contains,  according  to  Hartmann,1  very 
little  useful  material.  Reinaud’s  translation  of  Abulfeda,  en¬ 
riched  with  notes,  and  with  the  text,  as  given  by  XT.  Slane, 
1840,  Paris,  is  far  more  valuable.  It  is  to  be  regretted,  that 
as  yet  we  have  no  translation  of  the  Turkish  geography  con¬ 
tained  in  the  Jihannuma  of  Hadji  Chalfa,  a  monk,  which 
must  be  included  among  the  most  valuable  that  relate  to  the 
East ;  yet  we  have  to  express  our  obligations  here  to  the  illus¬ 
trious  orientalist,  von  Hammer,2  for  the  admirable  selections 
which  he  has  made  from  this  very  inaccessible,  very  important, 
and  yet  universally  neglected  geographical  authority. 

In  the  earlier  volumes  of  the  Erdkunde ,  we  have  often  had 
occasion  to  refer  to  the  Spanish  traveller,  Rabbi  Benjamin  of 
Tudela3  (1162-1173),  the  most  valuable  of  all  the  Jewish 
writers.  I  entirely  agree  with  Robinson’s  judgment  of  the 
worth  of  this  writer.  Robinson  says  that  A.  Asher’s  edition  is 
the  best  of  all.  It  has  been  asserted  that  this  book  is  full  of  inac¬ 
curacies  and  idle,  stories,  and  that  the  author  never  visited  the 
scenes  described  by  him.  But  the  first-named  fault  is  often 
met  in  writers  of  that  period  ;  and  I  have  found  in  his  treatise 
on  Palestine,4  that  so  far  as  he  goes,  he  bases  his  statements  on 
his  personal  observations,  and  is  quite  as  exact  and  trustworthy5 
as  any  of  his  cotemporaries.  A  long  way  behind  him  is  the 
work  of  Rabbi  Petachia6  of  Ratisbon  (1175-1180).  Very  much 
is  to  be  expected  of  the  learned  and  appreciative  criticism  of 

1  Leipsig  Lit.  Zeit.  1822,  No.  235. 

2  Wiener  JciJirb.  1836,  vol.  lxxiv.  pp.  39—96. 

3  A.  Asher,  The  Itinerary  of  Rabbi  Benjamin  of  Tudela — Text,  Biblio¬ 
graphy,  and  Translation,  London  and  Berlin  1840,  vol.  i.  pp.  58-89. 
Compare  AnmerJcungen ,  von  Tudela. 

4  Robinson,  Bibl.  Researches ,  ii.  536. 

5  Bullet,  de  la  Soc.  de  Geogr.  Paris  1848,  T.  ix.  p.  66. 

6  Rabbi  Petach'se  Peregrination  etc .,  Altorf  1687  ;  Hebrew  and  French , 
by  El  Carmoly,  Paris  1831.  in  Nouv.  Journ.  Asiat.  1831,  T.  viii.  pp. 
257-308,  353-413,  an  interpolated  passage. 



Selig  Cassel  on  Rabbi  Benjamin  ;  and  doubtless  bis  efforts 
will  contribute  much  to  do  away  with  the  perplexing  want  of 
uniform  excellence1  in  the  matter  and  manner  of  the  celebrated 
Hebrew  authority. 

The  distinguished  Jewish  scholar,  Dr  Zunz,  has  lately 
made  us  acquainted  with  a  work  very  highly  praised  by  him¬ 
self,  the  production  of  another  Jewish  author,  Esthori  Parchi 
of  Provence,  who,  being  banished  from  his  native  land  by  Philip 
le  Bel  in  1313,  went  to  the  East,  travelled  largely  in  Palestine, 
and  after  a  long  stay  there,  produced  his  valuable  work, 
Caphtor  wa  pherachj  1332.2  The  visit  of  this  author  to  Bisan 
(Scythopolis)  and  to  Galilee  is  particularly  interesting,  and  a 
translation  would  be  desirable. 

The  Itinera  Mundi  sic  dicta  Cosmographia ,  autore  Abraham 
Peritsol,  a  J ewish  Rabbi  of  Avignon,  edited  by  Thomas  Hyde, 
Oxon.  1691,  contains  in  various  chapters  only  material  of  a 
very  general  character  on  the  Terra  Israel.  A  whole  series 
of  Jewish  pilgrims  to  Palestine  exists,  including  such  names  as 
Samuel  ben  Simson  de  France,  1210  ;  Jakob  de  Paris,  1258  ; 
Ishak  Chelo  de  Laresa,  1334;  Elias  de  Ferrare,  1438 ;  Gerson 
ben  Moseh  Ascher  de  Scarmela,  1561 ;  Urie  de  Biel,  1564. 
These,  with  an  index  of  their  routes,  and  with  an  interesting 
map,  prepared  by  J.  Lellewel,  are  to  be  found  in  the  very 
recent  and  erudite  work  of  Carmoly  :3  for  Jewish  details,  and 
for  localities  especially  interesting  to  Jews,  these  works  are 
valuable.  I  must  not  omit  to  mention  the  travels  of  the 
celebrated  Jewish  convert,  Joseph  Wolff,4  made  in  1823  and 

With  the  assistance  of  that  rare  work,  Caphtor  wa  ferach , 
Jacob  Raplan  of  Minsk  has  prepared  his  General  Biblical 
Geography ,  Erez.  Kedumin  1839,  of  which  a  German  edition, 

1  Historische  Versuclie ,  von  Selig  Cassel,  Berlin  1847,  pp.  1-24. 

2  Dr  Zunz,  Nota  62  ;  Essay  on  the  Geog.  Literature  of  the  Jews ,  in  Asher’s 
eel.  of  Benjamin  de  Tudela ,  vol.  ii.  pp.  260-262. 

3  E.  Carmoly,  Itineraires  de  la  Terre  Sainte  des  xm.  a  xvn.  Siecle , 
traduits  de  VHebreu  et  accompagnes  de  Tables ,  de  Cartes ,  et  d'e'claircisse- 
mens ,  Bruxelles  1847. 

4  Bev.  Jos.  Wolff,  missionary  to  the  Jews,  Missionary  Journal ,  vol.  ii., 
comprising  his  second  visit  to  Palestine  and  Syria,  in  1823-4,  London 



in  lexicon  form,  was  announced  as  in  preparation  by  Dr  M. 
Freystadt  of  Konigsberg. 

In  1845  there  appeared  from  the  pen  of  the  distinguished 
German  scholar,  Babbi  Joseph  Schwartz  of  Jerusalem,  a  work 
bearing  the  title,  Sefer  Tebuot  Haarez ,  A.  5605,  i.e.  a  new 
description  of  Palestine.  This  is  a  work  based  upon  personal 
observation.  It  has  been  of  some  service  to  me ;  and  yet,  in  the 
description  of  the  country  and  its  physical  features,  I  have  not 
found  much  that  has  not  been  long  known.  In  learned  illus¬ 
trations  this  author  does  not  lack  at  all.  And  I  may  say  in 
general,  that  in  most  of  the  systematic  treatises  on  the  geo¬ 
graphy  of  Palestine,  there  is  no  lack  of  learning,  both  in  the 
departments  of  biblical  literature  and  oriental  scholarship  ;  but 
unfortunately  there  is  a  great  deficiency  in  positive  facts,  which 
are  gained  by  personal  inquiry  and  observation.  This  method 
of  treatment  has  led  to  very  uncertain  results,  and  to  many 
statements  which  are  purely  hypothetical :  these  could  only  be 
corrected  by  the  direct  personal  observation  which  characterizes 
the  researches  made  in  the  present  century.  Among  the  works 
of  untravelled  scholars,  may  be  mentioned  the  following  : — 

Samuel  is  Bocharti  Hierozoicon ,  and  his  Geographia  Sacra 
seu  Phaleg.  et  Canaan ,  in  Opp.  Lugdun.  Batavor.  ed.  3,  1692, 
3  vols.  fob  first  edit.  1646.  The  editio  of  the  Hierozoicon  sive 
de  Animalibus  sacrce  Script,  ed.  Bosenmiiller,  Lips.  1793.  At 
about  the  same  time  there  appeared  J.  H.  Ursini  Arboretum 
Biblicum ,  Norimb.  1685  ;  then  Matth.  Hilleri  Hierophyticon , 
Trajecti  ad  Bhenum  1725,  and  Olavi  Celsii  Hierobotanicon, 
sive  de  Plantis  Sacrce  Scriptures,  Amstelod.  1748  ;  Scheuchzeri 
Phy  sica  Sacra ,  h.  e.  Ilistoria  naturalis  Biblice ,  Augsb.  1731,  4 
vols.  These  writers  preceded  Hasselquist  and  Linnaeus. 

Johannes  Lmhtfoot  Ilorce  Hebraicce  et  Talmudic ce ;  a  choro- 
graphical  century  ;  searching  out,  chiefly  by  the  light  of  the 
Talmud,  some  more  memorable  places  in  the  land  of  Israel 
( Works,  vol.  x.  1825).  Opp.  Omnia,  Boterdami  1686,  fol.  in 
vol.  ii.  169-940. 

Christ.  Cellariusin  Notitice  Orbis  antiqui ,  etc.,  Lips.  1706,  in 
Libri  iii.  cap.  13,  pp.  464-470  ;  on  Palestine,  particularly  in  con¬ 
nection  with  classic  authors  :  the  most  learned  work  of  its  time. 

Hadrian  Eelandi  Palcestina  ex  monumentis  veteribus  illus- 
trata,  Trajecti  Batavor.  1714,  and  ed.  Norimberg  1716,  the 



first  thorough  basis  of  all  the  modern  scientific  works  on  the 
geography  of  the  Holy  Land.  I  may  refer  also  to  another 
work  of  the  same  distinguished  scholar,  Professor  of  Ancient 
Languages  and  Antiquities  at  Utrecht,  Dissert,  cle  Mari  Rubro , 
de  Monte  Gerizim ,  de  Samaritanis ,  de  OpJiir ,  etc.,  in  his  Dis- 
sertationes  Miscellanece ,  Pars  i.  et  ii.  Trajecti  ad  Rhenum  1700 
and  1707.  He  was  the  first  to  make  available  the  mass  of 
materials  collected  by  his  countryman  Olfert  Dapper  (Am¬ 
sterdam  1681,  folio),  and  other  works  which  had  been  prepared 
by  men  who  had  never  visited  Palestine. 

Edward  Wells’  Historical  Geography  of  the  Old  and  New 
Testament ,  Lond.  1712. 

J.  Chr.  Ilarenberg,  Supplementum  in  Hadr.  Relandi  recen - 
sionem  Urbium  et  Vicorum  Paloestince ,  in  Miscell.  Lips.  vol. 
iv.  v.  and  vi.  This  author  also  produced  the  first  valuable  map 
of  Palestine,  Nurenberg  1744  and  1750. 

Job.  M.  Hase,  Professor  of  Mathematics  in  Wittenberg, 
Regni  Davidici  et  Salomoncei  descriptio  geographic  a  et  historical 
Norimb.  1739,  fob  A  wrork  prepared  with  great  care,  both  in 
the  text  and  the  maps. 

Joh.  Jac.  Schmidt’s  biblischer  Geographus ,  Zullichau  1740. 
The  work  of  a  German  scholar;  a  better  compend  than  the  more 
comprehensive  and  eminent  work  which  preceded  it,  from  the 
pen  of  the  Benedictine  Abbot,  Augustine  Calmet,  Paris  1730. 
This  treatise  does  not  seem  to  have  been  known  to  Schmidt, 
versed  as  he  was  in  literature.  Its  title  is  Dictionnaire  Histor. 
Chronolog.  Geographique ,  et  Litteral  de  la  Bible. 

W.  A.  Bachiene  (mathematician  and  astronomer  in  Maes- 
tricht),  historische  und  geographische  Beschreibung  von  Palcestina , 
with  twelve  maps ;  intended  to  be  a  supplement  to  Reland,  and 
a  tedious  work,  Leipsig  1766,  8  vols. 

Ysbrand  van  Hamelsveld,  Aardrigh-bmde  des  Bib  else,  trans¬ 
lated  into  German,  Hamburg  1793. 

A.  Fr.  Biisching’s  Erdbeschreibung ,  Pt.  ii.  bbth.  1,  3d  ed. 
1792  ;  Palestine ,  from  pp.  374—510.  The  first  author  who  in¬ 
corporated  the  results  of  Niebuhr’s  observations  in  the  East. 
His  work,  in  accuracy,  closeness,  and  the  authenticity  which 
results  from  the  use  of  original  documents,  far  surpasses  all 
that  had  preceded  it,  and  remains  even  to  this  day,  and  will 
remain,  a  master  work  in  the  department  of  geography. 


Conr.  Mannert,  Geographic  dev  Griechen  und  Homer ,  in  Pt. 
vi.  B.  1;  Arabia ,  Palestine ,  cmJ  Syria,  Nnrnb.  1799. 

J.  J.  Bellerman,  Biblische  Geographie,  3  Pt.  2d  ed.  Erfurt 
1804.  A  manual  of  biblical  literature,  condensed,  and  pre¬ 
pared  by  a  master  of  oriental  languages. 

C.  F.  Klbden,  Landeskundc  von  Paldstina ,  Berlin  1817. 
This  admirable  work,  which  displayed  the  mutual  relations  of 
history  and  geography  in  a  more  marked  and  excellent  manner 
than  even  that  of  Yolney  had  done,  appeared  after  the  impulse 
was  felt  which  was  occasioned  by  the  discoveries  of  Niebuhr 
and  Seetzen,  for  Burckhardt’s  were  not  published  till  1822. 
Kloden’ s  work  was  accompanied  by  a  carefully  prepared  map 
(the  first  after  Reland’s),  which  was  indebted  for  a  part  of  its 
excellence  to  the  skill  of  the  French  artist,  Ch.  Paultre.  An 
essay  on  the  flora  and  fauna  of  Palestine,  written  by  Ruthe, 
and  contained  in  the  same  work,  is  worthy  of  examination ;  it 
is  only  to  be  compared  in  point  of  value  with  the  production 
of  Hasselquist  already  referred  to. 

E.  F.  K.  Rosenmiiller,  Geographic  von  Paldstina,  in  the 
second  volume  of  his  Handbuch  der  biblischen  Alter thmnskunde, 
Leipsig  1826.  This  work  is  characterized  more  for  the 
breadth  of  the  ground  which  it  covers,  and  the  extent  of  the 
materials  which  it  comprises,  than  for  the  originality  and  depth 
of  its  own  researches. 

F.  G.  Crome,  Geographische  historische  Beschreibung  des 
Landes  Syrien  (in  its  connection  with  Palestine),  Gottingen 
1834.  A  thorough  work,  based  on  Burckhardt  and  Bucking¬ 
ham  :  the  topography  of  Jerusalem  is  treated  with  an  exhaustive 

Paldstina j1  by  K.  von  Raumer,  Professor  in  Erlangen,  2d 
ed.  Leipsig  1838  (1st  ed.  1835).  As  a  manual  for  biblical 
students,  this  work  is  a  classic.  The  compactness  of  its  matter, 
the  clear  arrangement,  the  scientific  method,  the  completeness 
of  the  references  to  the  Old  and  New  Testaments,  place  this 
work  far  in  advance  of  all  compends  of  its  kind.  The  rapid 
progress  of  modern  investigation  leaves  something  to  be  desired 
in  the  present  value  of  the  work ;  but  in  high  tone,  delicacy  of 
feeling,  and  fidelity,  as  well  as  in  a  large  acquaintance  with  the 

1  In  addition  to  this :  Beitrdge  zur  biblischen  Geschichte,  von  K.  v. 
Raumer,  Leipsig  1818. 



relations  of  general  science  to  his  theme,  the  author  is  hardly 
to  be  surpassed. 


To  these  we  are  indebted,  as  will  soon  be  seen,  for  invalu¬ 
able  additions  to  our  knowledge  of  the  Holy  Land.  The 
works  which  our  own  age  has  produced  are  mostly  the  pro¬ 
ductions  of  eye-witnesses,  and  form  a  worthy  supplement  to 
those  whose  authors  have  already  passed  under  review.  In 
my  previous  researches,  I  have  felt  it  a  duty  connected  with 
the  performance  of  the  task  which  I  had  assigned  to  myself,  to 
survey  the  entire  literature  of  my  subject,  and  to  give  such 
hints  in  relation  to  the  value  of  all  works  of  any  importance,  as 
would  be  of  service  to  future  students ;  but  in  the  field  which 
now  opens,  it  is  doubtful  how  far  such  an  attempt  would  be 
possible  of  completion.  The  majority  of  the  works  hitherto 
cited  have  had  value  rather  to  general  scholars  than  to  geo¬ 
graphers  ;  and  in  order  to  obtain  even  single  grains  of  gold,  it 
has  often  been  necessary  for  me  to  pull  to  pieces  great  heaps 
of  rubbish.  But  with  the  opening  of  the  nineteenth  century 
there  is  a  great  change.  The  amount  of  geographical  material 
becomes  then  overwhelmingly  abundant,  and  the  facts  which 
have  been  elicited  (although  repeated,  it  may  be,  again  and 
again)  are  so  embarrassingly  numerous,  that  to  examine  them 
all  requires  an  extent  of  time  and  an  amount  of  strength  so 
great,  as  to  cause  one  to  almost  succumb  and  retire  from  the 
task.  If,  when  Busching  wrote,  1781,  he  could  say  that  it 
required  whole  months  of  preparation  before  he  felt  qualified 
to  enter  upon  his  account  of  Palestine,  I  may  say  that,  after  as 
many  years  of  toil  as  he  spent  months,  I  do  not  feel  ready  to 
undertake  a  “  Comparative  Geography  of  the  Holy  Land  ” 
which  shall  be  worthy  to  be  regarded  as  a  finished  work.  With 
all  my  effort  it  must  be  incomplete.  It  is  only  the  conviction 
gained  by  experience,  that  even  imperfect  works  may  serve  as 
a  bridge  to  conduct  future  investigators  to  more  ripened  results, 
which  gives  me  courage  to  enter  upon  this  difficult  field  of  my 

In  the  following;  list  I  shall  do  little  more  than  refer  to 
the  authorities  which  are  best  known,  without  any  attempt  to 



characterize  them.1  In  the  course  of  our  future  studies  these 
will  pass  so  closely  under  review,  that  the  reader  will  be  under 
no  doubt  of  their  comparative  degrees  of  excellence.  Mean¬ 
while  the  recapitulation  of  their  titles 2  in  full  will  save  much 
trouble  in  future,  in  preventing  the  necessity  of  restating  them 
with  troublesome  repetition. 

1800.  E.  D.  Clarke,  Travels  in  various  Countries ,  vol.  iv. 
4th  ed.  Lond.  1817  ;  Holy  Land ,  chap.  iii. — ix.  He  was  only 
seventeen  days  in  Palestine.  His  work  displays  more  general 
scholarship  than  positive  acquaintance  with  the  country.  He 
advanced  hypotheses,  and  went  to  extremes  in  his  judgments, 
which  have  been  much  modified  and  corrected  by  those  who 
have  come  after  him. 

1807.  Ali  Bey  (the  anonymous  Spanish  Domingo  Badials 
Leblich,  who  for  a  while  was  erroneously  considered  to  be 
Burckhardt,  and  who,  as  a  Mohammedan,  attracted  much  in¬ 
terest  in  Europe),  Travels ,  vol.  ii.  pp.  140-59,  London  1816. 
His  exact,  though  not  voluminous  narrative,  has  been  of  ser¬ 
vice  to  Berghaus3  in  constructing  the  map  of  Syria.  Ali  Bey 
was  fortunate  enough  to  gain  access  to  the  mosques. 

1805-1807.  Ulr.  Jacob  Seetzen,  Reiseberichte.  In  May 
1805,  Seetzen,4  who  was  known  in  the  East  as  Sheikh  Musa, 
reached  Damascus ;  in  March  1806  he  travelled  through  the 
district  of  Belkah,  on  the  east  side  of  the  Jordan;5  in  January 
1807  he  traversed  the  countrv  east  of  the  Dead  Sea  as  far  as 

t f 

Iverak,  being  the  first  who  explored  this  region ;  and  in  the 
following  year  he  passed  from  Jerusalem  through  the  Desert 
of  et-Tih,  and  thence  to  Cairo.  In  von  Zach’s  Monatliche  Cor¬ 
respondent r,6  his  valuable  papers,  which  for  a  long  time  were 
scattered  widely,  were  printed ; 7  but  up  to  the  present  time  no 

1  J.  v.  Hammer-Purgstall,  in  Rev.  of  18  works  on  Syria  in  tlie  Wien - 
Jahrb.  der  Literat.  vol.  xlv.  and  xlix. ;  again  in  1836,  vol.  lxxiv.  pp.  1-102; 
also  in  1839,  vol.  lxxxvii.  pp.  1-203  ;  again  in  1843,  vol.  ciii.  pp.  1-68. 

2  H.  Berghaus,  Geogr.  Memoir  zur  Erlduterung  und  Erlcldrung  der  Karte 
von  Syrien,  Gotha  1835,  pp.  1-21. 

3  Berghaus,  Syria  Mem.  p.  508. 

4  Yon  Zach,  Monatl.  Correspond.  1806,  May,  p.  508. 

5  The  same,  1807,  xvi.  July,  p.  79. 

6  Die  Kartograpliische  Benutzung ,  in  Kloden  und  Berghaus,  Syria  Memoir, 
pp.  7-9. 

7  The  same,  1807,  vol.  xvii.  Feb.  p.  132. 



collection  of  this  eminent  German  traveller’s  documents,  jour¬ 
nals,  and  the  like,  has  been  published,  to  serve  as  the  worthy 
monument  of  a  zealous  and  eminent  martyr  to  the  cause  of 
science.  Less  fortunate  than  his  follower  Burckhardt,  himself 
a  German,  who  traversed  the  same  region,  and  who  alone  can 
be  compared  with  him,  Seetzen’s  writings  are  but  little  known 
to  the  world  of  scholars  ;T  while  Burckhardt’ s,  under  the  auspices 
of  the  London  Society,  have  been  largely  disseminated.  I  do 
not  give  up  the  hope,  however,  of  seeing  justice  done  to  Seetzen 
in  this  regard.  The  reader  has  already  noticed  the  large 
extracts  which  I  have  made  elsewhere  from  his  scattered 
papers,  and  needs  no  words  of  mine,  I  trust,  to  convince  him 
that,  despite  the  rapid  progress  made  since  Seetzen  lived,  much 
may  still  be  learned  of  him.2 

1802.  Lieutenant-Colonel  Squire,  Travels  through  part  of 
the  ancient  Coelo-Syria.  From  his  literary  remains.  The  in¬ 
structive  tour  in  Middle  Syria  was  made  in  company  with  W. 
Hamilton  and  W.  M.  Leake.3 

1806—7.  F.  A.  Chateaubriand,  ItinSraire  de  Paris  a  Jeru¬ 
salem ,  Paris,  3  vols.  Written  with  enthusiasm,  in  the  spirit  of 
the  old  pilgrimages,  more  brilliant  than  instructive,  and  full  of 
historical  errors.  See  Munk,  Palestine ,  p.  657. 

1810-1816.  Johann  Ludwig  Burckhardt  of  Basle,  Travels 
in  Syria  and  the  Holy  Land ,  published  by  the  Association  for 
promoting  the  Discovery  of  the  interior  parts  of  Africa,  with 
preface  by  W.  M.  Leake,  London  1822.4  This  work  contains 
the  record  of  his  various  travels  in  Syria,  which  were  intended 
to  serve  as  preparative  to  his  labours  of  discovery  in  Inner 
Africa.  His  premature  death  at  Cairo  in  1817  disappointed  his 
hope,  as  well  as  that  of  the  world.  The  journey  from  Damas¬ 
cus  to  the  Lebanon  took  place  in  the  autumn  of  1810,  shortly 

1  Respecting  Seetzen’s  papers  and  journals,  see  a  letter  from  Prof. 
Kruse  in  the  Monthly  Gazette  of  the  Berlin.  Geog.  Soc.  New  Series,  vol.  i. 
pp.  296-300. 

2  It  may  interest  the  reader  to  know,  that  since  the  above  words  were 
written,  Seetzen’s  writings  have  been  collected  and  published  in  Germany 
• — the  result  largely  of  Ritter’s  personal  influence. — Ed. 

3  Robert  Walpole,  Travels  in  various  Countries  of  the  East ,  London  1820, 
pp.  292-352. 

4  German  Translation,  with  critical  remarks,  by  Dr  Gesenius,  Weimar 
1823,  2d  Pt. 



after  tlie  visit  of  Seetzen,  as  also  did  that  to  Hauran ;  in  the 
winter  of  1812  he  went  from  Aleppo  to  Damascus  ;  in  the 
spring,  through  the  valley  of  the  Orontes  to  the  Lebanon,  and 
again  through  Hauran  to  Tiberias  and  Palestine ;  then  in  the 
summer  of  the  same  year,  from  Damascus  through  Arabia 
Petrasa  to  Cairo,  tlience  to  make  that  journey  of  1816  to  Sinai 
on  which  we  have  already  accompanied  him.  Burckhardt  is 
recognised  as  one  of  the  most  admirable  observers,  and  one  of 
the  most  instructive  travellers  who  have  visited  the  East.  His 
works  have  enjoyed  the  advantage  of  the  editorship  of  Leake 
and  Gesenius.1 

1814.  H.  Light,  Travels  in  Egypt ,  Iloly  Land ,  etc.,  London 
1818 ;  and  (1815)  William  Turner,  Journal  of  a  Tour  in  the 
Levant ,  London  1820,  3  vols. 

1815-1816.  Otto  Friedrich  von  Richter,  Wallfalirten  im 
Morgenlande ,  herausgegeben  von  J.  P.  G.  Ewers,  Berlin 
1822.  These  three  works  contain  important  topographical 
details,  all  of  which  have  been  turned  to  profitable  service  by 

1818.  Thomas  Legh,  Excursion  from  Jerusalem  to  Wadi 
Musa ,  in  William  MacMichael’s  Journey  from  Moscow  to  Con¬ 
stantinople,  London  1819.  The  fourth  chapter  contained  the 
sketch  of  his  tour  from  Jaffa  to  Kerak  from  April  2  to  May 
17,  1818  ;  then  follows  the  journey  to  Petra  and  back.  His 
course  next  is  from  Kerak  northward  along  the  east  shore  of 
the  Dead  Sea  to  Damascus  and  Aleppo.  His  narrative  is  brief, 
but  of  some  value  on  account  of  the  newness  of  his  route. 
The  narratives  of  his  companions  in  travel,  Irby  and  Mangles, 
were  unfortunately  not  available  to  Berghaus  in  constructing 
his  masterly  map  of  Syria  and  Palestine.2 

1817-1818.  Charles  Leonard  Irby  and  James  Mangles, 
commanders  in  the  Boyal  Navy,  Travels  in  Egypt,  Nubia,  Syria, 
and  Asia  Minor,  printed  for  private  distribution,  London  1823. 
Robinson  has  expressed  his  regret  that  the  valuable  record, 
though  very  hastily  written  down,  of  these  remarkably  obser¬ 
vant  travellers  has  never  been  published  to  the  world.  They 
had  for  companions,  in  the  valley  of  Lake  Tiberias,  Mr  Wil- 

1  See  Leake  respecting  the  chartographical  importance  of  the  work  in 
the  preface ;  also  Berghaus,  Syria  Mem.  pp.  9-12. 

2  Berghaus’  Syria  Memoir ,  p.  18. 



liam  John  Banks,  and  in  Kerak  Mr  Legh,  whose  brief  narra¬ 
tive  wras  referred  to  just  above.  The  newness  of  the  routes 
which  they  took,1  particularly  in  the  region  east  of  the  Dead 
Sea,  has  given  their  work  a  value  altogether  disproportionate 
to  its  humble  pretensions.  The  fact  that  Irby  and  Mangles’ 
book  was  never  published,2  in  the  booksellers’  sense,  deprived 
von  Baumer  among  others  of  its  service  :  he  had  only  the 
briefer  narrative  of  Legh.  And  a  yet  greater  subject  of  regret 
is  it,  that  Mr  Banks,  after  his  many  years  of  travel  in  the 
East,  and  with  his  very  extensive  information,  should  be  so 
stubbornly  reticent,  at  least  in  regard  to  the  district  east  of  the 
Jordan,  rich  as  it  is  in  places  of  the  greatest  interest  to  the 
historian  and  the  antiquarian. 

I  have  alluded  in  the  preceding  volume  to  that  part  of 
Irby  and  Mangles’  work  which  relates  to  the  route  from  Kerak 
to  Petra;  and  may  now  refer  to  Letter  ii.  pp.  174-236,  the 
account  of  the  journey  from  el-Arish  and  Gaza  to  Aleppo, 
including  the  excursion  in  1818  to  Palmyra ;  Letter  iv.  pp. 
285-334,  describing  the  route  from  Damascus  through  the 
valley  of  the  Jordan  to  Nablus  and  Jerusalem  ;  and  Letter  v., 
describing  the  journey  along  the  wrest  coast  of  the  Dead  Sea 
to  Petra,  thence  back  to  Kerak,  and  so  up  the  east  shore, 
and  by  a  route  which  embraced  Heshbon,  Kabbath- Amman, 
Jeraj,  and  Tiberias,  to  Acre.  The  map  which  records 
their  wanderings  has  received  valuable  corrections  from  the 
hands  of  Lord  Belmore,  Capt.  Corry,  and  Lieut.-Colonel 

1818.  Bobert  Bichardson,  Travels  along  the  Mediterranean 
and  parts  adjacent ,  in  company  with  the  Earl  of  Belmore,  181 6— 
1818,  London  1822,  2  vols.  These  gentlemen  spent  only  a 
hundred  and  twTo  days  in  Syria,  traversing  the  more  familiar 
routes  of  Palestine,  as  far  south  as  to  the  region  west  of  the 
Bahr  el  Huleh.3  Dr  Bichardson  has  been  called  by  English¬ 
men,  in  consequence  of  his  accuracy,  the  Maundrell  of  the 
nineteenth  century. 

1  Irby  and  Mangles,  Trav.  pp.  183,  232,  333  et  seq. 

2  When  this  was  written,  Ritter  was  not  aware  that  Mr  Murray  of 
Loudon  had  published  the  travels  of  Irby  and  Mangles,  2  vols.  lCrno. 
1844.— Ed. 

3  Berghaus,  Syria  Memoir ,  pp.  19,  20. 



1816.  J.  S.  Buckingham,  Travels  in  Palestine ,  through  the 
countries  of  Baslian  and  Gilead  east  of  the  river  Jordan ,  includ¬ 
ing  a  Visit  to  the  Cities  of  Geraza  and  Gamala,  London  1822, 
2d  ed.  2  vols. ;  with  Travels  (by  the  same)  among  the  Arab 
Tribes  inhabiting  the  countries  east  of  Syria  and  Palestine ,  1825. 
The  last  named  is  a  continuation  of  the  first,  which  closes  with 
the  author’s  stay  in  Nazareth  during  February  1816.  The 
second  narrative  takes  up  the  story  where  the  first  drops  it, 
and  in  the  form  of  a  somewhat  tedious  and  disconnected 
journal  of  travel,  takes  the  reader  along  the  east  valley  of  the 
Jordan  as  far  as  Antioch  and  Aleppo.  Notwithstanding  the 
bad  repute  into  which  this  traveller  has  fallen  in  consequence 
of  his  appropriation  of  a  part  of  the  honour  due  to  Burckhardt 
and  Banks  for  their  discoveries,  and  for  abusing  their  confidence 
in  his  honour  by  publishing  what  was  not  confided  to  him  with 
that  view,  and  in  spite  of  the  great  inaccuracy  of  Buckingham 
in  matters  which  require  historical  and  philological  attainments, 
yet  it  would  be  unjust  to  deny  him  the  credit  due  to  a  bold  and 
ardent  explorer,  and  a  man  whose  careful  measurements  of 
angles,  distances,  levels,  and  the  like,  have  served  as  very  impor¬ 
tant  data  in  enabling  Berghaus  to  complete  his  admirable  map,1 
and  to  insert  many  particulars  which  must  otherwise  have  been 

Less  important  and  noteworthy  are  the  unpretending  narra¬ 
tives  of  some  travellers  who  visited  the  Holy  Land  at  almost 
the  same  time  with  those  last  mentioned  :  the  observant  Swiss 
J.  G.  Mayr,2  1812-13;  T.  B.  Joliffe,  1817,  whose  work  is  a 
valuable  help  to  biblical  students;  Cornpte  cle  Forbin,  1817-18, 
enricbed  with  copper-plate  sketches;  F.  W.  Sieber,3  1818;  Sir 
F.  Henniker,  1820-21  ;  John  Carne,  1821 ;  and  Berggren  the 
Swede,  1821,  who  paid  special  attention  to  the  topography  of 
Jerusalem.  The  works  of  all  these  writers  are  worth  looking 
into,  and  are  by  no  means  destitute  of  merit.  In  relation  to 
missions,  the  condition  of  the  Jews  resident  in  Palestine,  and 
the  religious  state  of  the  country,  the  writings  of  the  mission- 

1  Berghaus,  Syria  Memoir ,  pp.  12-16. 

2  Joh.  G.  Mayr’s  Reise ,  St  Gallen  1820.  Only  the  fourth  and  fifth 
books  need  be  consulted,  pp.  301-432. 

3  F.  W.  Sieber,  Reise  von  Cairo  nach  Jerusalem ,  Leipsig  1823 :  with  a 
few  botanical  remarks. 

VOL.  II. 




aries,  W.  Jowett,  Pliny  Fisk,  and  Joseph  Wolff,  are  the  chief 
authorities ;  in  what  pertains  to  the  Catholic  foundations  of 
the  land,  Dr  M.  A.  Scholz,  1820-21,  Reise  ncich  Paldstina  und 
Syrien ,  is  the  most  competent  guide.  The  writings  of  Kuppell, 
Laborde,  and  others,  who  have  confined  their  researches  entirely 
to  Arabia  Petrgea  (so  far  as  the  country  known  in  the  broadest 
sense  as  the  Holy  Land  is  concerned),  I  need  not  allude  to 

1829.  A.  v.  Prokesch,  Reise  ins  heilige  Land ,  Vienna 
1831.  Like  all  the  writings  of  this  author,  interesting  and 

A.  Daldini,  Viaggio  di  Terra  Santa ,  Milano  1830.  A  work 
with  which  I  am  as  yet  unacquainted. 

1830-31.  Michaud  et  Poujoulat,  Correspondance  dH  Orient, 
Paris  1833,  7  vols.  The  distinguished  name  of  the  historian 
of  the  Crusades  is  not  a  correct  voucher  of  the  value  of  this 
work,  which  is  of  inferior  value,  and  owes  what  excellence  it 
does  possess  to  the  hand  not  of  Michaud,  but  of  Poujoulat. 
After  the  History  of  the  Crusades  was  finished,  its  author  went 
to  Palestine,  in  order  to  study  the  ground  of  which  he  had 
written  so  much.  The  gentleman  above  named  was  his  travel¬ 
ling  companion.  So  meagre  were  the  results,  that,  according 
to  von  Hammer,1  a  most  thorough  critic,  there  are  many  inac¬ 
curacies  in  the  parts  which  relate  even  to  the  country  most 
closely  connected  with  the  sites  made  famous  by  the  deeds  of 
the  crusaders.  More  recently  still,  1836-39,  Poujoulat’ s  bro¬ 
ther  Baptistin2  has  visited  the  country  to  fill  the  gaps  which 
existed  in  the  earlier  correspondence.  His  contributions  will 
be  found  in  vol.  ii.  pp.  1-508. 

1832-33.  Edw.  Hogg,  Visit  to  Alexandria ,  Damascus ,  and 
Jerusalem ,  London  1835,  2  vols.  The  influence  of  the  power¬ 
ful  sway  of  Ibrahim  Pasha  in  Egypt  led  to  such  a  degree  of 
security  even  in  the  adjacent  Syria,  that  many  travellers,  English¬ 
men  in  particular,  were  induced  to  visit  Palestine.  It  is  true 
they  often  took  the  old  familiar  paths,  they  often  dashed  hastily 
through  the  country,  they  often  repeated  what  had  been  told 
before,  and  yet  they  have  contributed  much  that  was  new. 

1  In  Wien.  Jahrb.  1836,  lxxix.  pp.  5-102. 

2  Baptistin  Poujoulat,  Voyage  de  VAsie  Mineur  en  Mesopotamie ,  a 
Pahnyre  en  Syrie ,  en  Palestine  et  Egypt ,  etc  ,  Paris  1841,  2  vols. 



It  is  unnecessary  to  name  them  all :  only  a  few  of  the  most 
eminent  names  need  be  cited  here;  among  them  Dr  Hogg, 
whose  work  only  touches  upon  Palestine  in  the  second  part ; 
John  Madox,1  who  has  contributed  some  new  topographical 
data  regarding  rivers,  mountains,  and  celebrated  places  ;  Rev. 
Yere  Monro/2  whose  instructive  work  has  many  points  of  ex¬ 
cellence  ;  Major  Skinner,3  1833,  who  in  his  journey  to  India 
passed  through  Palestine  as  far  as  Damascus.  Soon  after 
these  there  followed  J.  L.  Stephens,  1836,  an  American;  Pax¬ 
ton,  1836-38 ;  Rev.  C.  B.  Elliot,4  1836,  who,  in  consequence  of 
the  valuable  companionship  of  G.  Nicolayson,  a  missionary  of 
great  experience  and  long  residence,  ought  to  have  made  valu¬ 
able  contributions  to  our  knowledge  of  Palestine,  but  whom  a 
showy  pretence  to  learning  and  etymological  skill  often  led 
into  gross  errors.  Palestine  is  in  the  second  volume  of  his 
work.  Lord  Lindsay’s5  narrative,  written  in  1837,  and  full 
of  youthful  life,  has  been  fully  drawn  from  in  the  previous 
volume.  Charles  G.  Addison  and  G.  Robinson6  are  instruc¬ 
tive  in  many  particulars,  especially  in  relation  to  the  political 
condition  and  hydrography  of  the  country. 

1831-33.  At  about  the  same  date,  two  Frenchmen  of 
deeply  religious  nature,  and  of  distinguished  talents,  visited  the 
Holy  Land  in  the  spirit  of  the  devoted  pilgrims  of  the  middle 
ages,  full  of  an  earnest  longing  to  receive  a  higher  consecration 
of  life  amidst  the  sacred  scenes  of  Bible  story,  and  at  the  same 
time,  while  strengthening  their  pious  feeling,  to  do  good  service 
to  art  and  learning.  Their  model  was  the  brilliant  and  fanci¬ 
ful  work  of  Chateaubriand,  their  eminent  countryman  and 
predecessor.  One  of  them,  the  experienced  and  accomplished 

1  John  Madox,  Excursions  in  the  Holy  Land ,  London  1834,  2  vols. 
Reviewed  in  Wien.  Jahrb.  vol.  lxxiv.  p.  39. 

2  Rev.  Yere  Monro,  A  Summer  Ramble  in  Syria ,  Lond.  1835,  2  vols. 

3  Maj.  Skinner,  Adventures  during  a  Journey  overland  to  India ,  etc ., 
London  1837. 

4  C.  B.  Elliot,  Travels  in  the  Three  Great  Empires ,  2  vols.  London  1838. 
See  Wien.  Jahrb.  vol.  lxxxvii.  p.  41,  etc. 

5  Lord  Lindsay,  Letters  on  Egypt ,  Edom ,  and  the  Holy  Land ,  Lond. 
1839,  3d  ed.  in  T.  ii.  pp.  50-232  ;  together  with  letter  of  Mr  Farren. 

6  C.  G.  Addison,  Damascus  and  Palmyra ,  Lond.  1838,  2  vols. ;  G. 
Robinson,  Travels  in  Palestine  and  Syria ,  London  1837,  2  vols. 



Father  Marie  Joseph  de  Geramb,1  a  clergyman  of  the  order  of 
Trappists  from  the  Abbey  Mont  des  Olives  in  Alsace,  had  been 
driven  by  the  Revolution  of  July  from  his  peaceful  home,  and 
forced  by  the  stormy  waves  which  surged  around  him,  and  the 
wounds  which  his  native  land  had  received,  to  find  a  refuge  for 
his  simple  nature  in  that  holy  city  and  home  of  his  faith,  for 
whose  future  in  his  mind,  as  well  as  in  that  of  the  young  and 
glowing  Alphonse  de  Lamartine,2  there  burned  a  noble  hope, 
which  uttered  itself  in  the  fiery  language  of  poetry  and  patriotic 
enthusiasm.  De  Geramb’ s  work  is  the  edifying  and  unobtru¬ 
sive  description  of  what  he  had  witnessed  in  the  Holy  Land 
as  well  as  in  Egypt.3  Not  so  unpretending,  however,  are  the 
Souvenirs  of  Lamartine.  As  the  title  indicates,  they  do  not 
propose  a  scientific  treatment  of  the  theme ;  and  the  language 
of  a  thorough  orientalist  is  just,  that  nothing  of  a  geographical 
nature  is  to  be  learned  from  Lamartine’s  work ;  and  quite  as 
little  that  is  authentically  historic,  since  he,  like  Chateaubriand, 
has  fallen  into  many  an  error.  His  work,  which  is  universally 
known,  is  valuable  for  its  rich  poetic  fancies,  and  its  artistic 
delineation  of  the  beauties  of  nature.  With  Father  Geramb’s 
work  we  must  couple  one  which  followed  almost  immediately 
after,  written  by  Joseph  Salzbacher,  Prebendary  of  St 
Stephen’s  Church  in  Vienna,  1839,  2  vols.  This  work  is  an 
excellent  contribution  to  our  knowledge  of  the  present  position 
of  Catholic  institutions  in  Palestine. 

1834.  Marmont,  Due  de  Raguse,  Voyage  en  Ilongrie ,  etc.,  en 
Syrie ,  en  Palestine ,  etc.,  Bruxelles  1837,  4  vols.  This  work  con¬ 
tains  a  very  compact  account  of  Palestine,  the  record  of  a  very 
observant  mind,  and  is  particularly  valuable  in  its  political  and 
military  details.  Its  contributions  to  our  knowledge  of  the 
physical  character  of  the  country  are  not  unimportant,  as  his 
instruments  were  all  trustworthy. 

We  close  this  list  of  authorities  on  the  general  character  of 
the  country  as  a  whole,  by  citing  the  three  most  noted  works  of 
all,  whose  authors  followed  each  other  in  quick  succession,  and 

1  Rev.  Pere  Marie  Joseph  de  Geramb,  Religieux  de  la  Trappe,  Pilgrim¬ 
age  a  Jerusalem  et  au  Mt.  Sinai  en  1831—1833,  Tournay  1836. 

2  Souvenirs ,  Impressions,  Pensees,  et  Passages  pendant  un  Voyage  en 
Orient ,  par  Lamartine,  de  l’Academie  Franchise  ;  Oeuvres,  Brux.  1838. 

3  Wien.  Jalu'b.  1836,  vol.  lxxiv.  pp.  4,  15-21. 



traversed  all  parts  of  tills  inexhaustible  country,  everywhere 
bringing  new  and  interesting  facts  to  light.  In  the  preceding 
volume,  I  have  so  fully  quoted  from  their  works,  that  their 
most  striking  characteristics  are  already  familiar  to  the  reader ; 
and  it  is  not  necessary  here  to  repeat  formally,  that  they  stand 
altogether  in  advance  of  those  who  preceded  them.  Yon 
Schubert,  Robinson,  and  Russegger,  noble,  honoured  names, 
are  by  a  happy  fortune  my  own  personal  dear  friends ; 
and  I  cannot  forbear  returning  them  my  warmest  thanks  for 
the  free  use  of  the  records  of  their  leisurely  journeyings  and 
unwearied  researches  in  the  Holy  Land,  without  which  it  would 
have  been  impossible  for  me  to  have  ventured  on  the  prepara¬ 
tion  of  the  present  work,  which  owes  its  best  and  most  impor¬ 
tant  parts  to  the  results  of  their  patient  efforts. 

Of  Russegger’s  researches  I  have  spoken  so  fully  in  the 
preceding  volume,  that  it  is  unnecessary  to  recapitulate  in  this 

1836-37.  Dr  G.  IL  von  Schubert,  Reise  in  das  Morgen- 
land ,  Erlangen  1839,  of  which  vol.  ii.  pp.  462—591,  and  vol.  iii. 
pp.  1-390,  contain  the  portion  relating  to  Palestine  and  Syria. 
One  of  the  most  learned  critics  has  said  as  truly  as  finely,  that 
Schubert  has  caught  the  genuine  spirit  of  the  East  as  almost 
no  one  of  his  predecessors  has  done,  and  reproduced  it  with  a 
fidelity  and  a  heartiness  which  is  quite  unique,  proceeding  from 
that  religious  point  of  view,  from  which  alone  the  philosophy, 
morals,  customs,  and  mode  of  life  in  the  East  can  be  correctly 
appreciated.  Without  hunting  after  what  is  paradoxical,  as  so 
many  who  went  before  him  have  done,  and  without  losing 
sight  of  what  is  essential  and  vital  by  reason  of  the  abundance 
and  multifariousness  of  his  learning,  this  author,  who  undertook 
the  difficult  journey  at  the  age  of  fifty-six,  has  accomplished 
his  task  with  so  much  spirit  and  such  signal  success,  and  repro¬ 
duced  his  own  impressions  with  so  much  freedom  and  life,  and 
enriched  the  mind  of  his  reader  with  so  much  that  is  new 
regarding  the  natural  history  of  the  Holy  Land,  that  even 
where  he  recounts  what  is  old  and  trite,  his  charmingly  written 
narrative  finds  favour ;  and  everywhere,  where  he  undertakes 
to  depict  the  scenery  of  the  country,  he  does  it  with  a  masters 

1838.  E.  Robinson  and  E.  Smith,  Biblical  Researches  in 



Palestine ,  Mount  Sinai ,  and  Arabia  Petrcea  in  1838,  drawn  tip 
from  the  original  diaries,  with  historical  illustrations  bv  Edward 
Robinson,  Professor  of  Biblical  Literature  in  the  Union  Theol. 
Seminary,  New  .York  ;  writh  new  map  and  plans  in  five  sheets ; 
London,  J.  Murray,  1841,  3  vols.  The  same  title  in  the  Am. 
ed.  :  Boston,  Crocker  and  Brewster.1 

This  work,  which  was  originally  written  in  English  in 
Berlin,  was  translated  into  German  partly  by  the  author  him¬ 
self,  and  wholly  under  his  personal  supervision ;  and  the  two 
editions,  published  simultaneously  in  London  and  Halle,  as 
well  as  that  which  appeared  in  Boston,  are  the  author’s  own. 
The  only  difference  is  in  the  dedication :  the  English  edition 
being  inscribed  to  Lord  Prudhoe  [the  late  Duke  of  Northum¬ 
berland]  ;  the  American,  to  Rev.  Moses  Stewart,  Professor  of 
Sacred  Literature  in  the  Andover  Theological  Seminary ;  the 
German,  to  the  author  of  this  work.  The  maps,  which  were  con¬ 
structed  with  the  rare  skill  of  Dr  Kiepert  from  the  voluminous 
data  furnished  by  Robinson,  the  result  of  his  innumerable 
measurements,  and  which  were  lithographed  in  the  most  faith¬ 
ful  and  beautiful  manner  by  II.  Mahlmann,  raised  the  charto- 
graphy  of  Palestine  one  step  higher  even  than  Berghaus  had 
placed  it ;  and  they  remain  perhaps  the  very  finest  efforts  of 
skill  which  have  appeared  either  in  or  out  of  Germany,  and 
are  inserted  on  account  of  their  great  value  in  the  English, 
American,  and  German  editions  of  the  work. 

The  union  of  that  very  close  observation  of  the  topogra¬ 
phical  features  of  the  country  which  characterizes  the  work  of 
Burckhardt,  with  many  preparatory  studies,  particularly  with  a 
thorough  familiarity  with  the  Bible,  and  with  philological  and 
historical  criticism,  and  the  thorough  acquaintance  with  the 
colloquial  language  of  the  country  enjoyed  by  Mr  Smith,  who 
had  long  been  a  missionary  there,  make  this  work,  prepared 
as  it  was  after  the  severest  toil,  a  classic  in  its  own  field, — a 
production  which  has  already  set  the  geography  of  the  Holy 
Land  on  a  more  fixed  basis  than  it  had  ever  had  before,  and 
which  will  ensure  its  continued  advance.  No  previous  work 
had  collected  a  greater  store  of  new  and  important  discoveries 
of  a  historico-critical  character,  says  the  competent  judge, 

1  It  is  hardly  necessary  to  tell  the  reader  that  a  later  and  enlarged 
edition,  with  subsequent  researches,  has  been  since  published. — Ed. 



J.  Olshausen  ;  and  the  admirable  principles  of  investigation 
which  are  unfolded  in  Robinson’s  work,  will  serve  as  a  beacon 
for  all  future  explorers,  who  shall  endeavour  to  read  the  word 
of  God  by  the  light  reflected  from  the  scenes  amid  which  it 
was  recorded.  The  work  has  marked  an  epoch  in  biblical 
geography.  The  universally  recognised  merits  of  its  author1 — 
who  has  been,  as  becomes  a  true  schplar,  not  grudging  in  his 
commendation  of  worthy  predecessors  in  the  same  field,  but 
who  has  had  at  times,  in  his  eager  search  after  truth,  to  be  the 
open  foe  of  convent  legends,  the  light  tales  of  tradition,  and  the 
gross  historical  errors  which  lay  in  his  way — have  not  prevented 
his  being  attacked  by  all  kinds  of  adversaries,  some  of  them 
men  of  superficial  attainments,  some  of  them  men  actuated  by 
base  motives  or  by  passionate  animosity.2  But  Robinson  was 
not  engaged  in  defending  a  set  of  opinions,  but  in  attaining 
tjhe  truth  ;  and  knowing  that  every  human  work  has  its  imper¬ 
fections,  he  did  not  pretend,  as  his  own  pages  show,  that  his 
book  was  a  completed  production,  but  rather  a  careful  essay3 
towards  a  result  which  he  believed  other  men  would  come  to 
fulfil  in  a  more  perfect  manner  than  lay  within  his  power. 
The  task  of  his  life,  first  to  last,  lay  before  him  rather  than 
behind  him ;  and  the  German  editor  of  his  later  researches 
(Rodiger)  very  justly  says  that  Robinson’s  greatest  merit  lies 

1  Quarterly  Review ,  vol.  Ixix.  Art.  v.  pp.  150-185.  Wien.  Jahrb.  der 
Literatur ,  1842,  vol.  xcviii.  pp.  126,  159,  and  1843,  vol.  cii.  pp.  214-235, 
von  J.  Olshausen  ;  Hallische  Ally.  Literatur  Zeitung,  1842,  Nos.  28,  29, 
pp.  218-240;  Nos.  71-73,  pp.  561-583,  1843;  Nos.  110,  111,  pp.  265-280, 
by  Rodiger  ;  Gross  of  Wurtemburg,  in  the  fourth  No.  of  the  Theol.  Stud.  u. 
Krit.  1843,  in  Ranmer,  Beitrdge,  1843. 

2  Bulletin  de  la  Soc.  Geogr.  de  Paris ,  1840,  T.  xiii.  pp.  156-161,  in  Leon 
de  Laborde,  Commentaire  geogr.  sur  VExode ,  Paris  1841,  in  App.  i.  ;  Rev. 
Geo.  Williams,  The  Holy  City ,  or  Hist,  and  Topogr.  Notices  of  Jerusalem , 


3  Bibliotheca  Sacra ,  or  Tracts  and  Essays ,  etc.,  editor  E.  Robinson,  New 
York,  1843.  In  this  are  Researches  in  Palestine ,  compiled  by  the  editor 
from  various  communications  from  Eli  Smith  and  R.  S.  Wolcott,  with  a 
map,  pp.  9-88.  The  Reputed  Site  of  the  Holy  Sepidclire,  pp.  184-202  ;  The 
Druzes  of  Lebanon,  pp.  205-253  ;  Bibliotheca  Sacra  and  Theol.  Review,  by 
Edwards  and  Park,  New  York,  1844,  vol.  i. ;  E.  Robinson,  Notes  on  Bibli¬ 
cal  Geog.  pp.  217-221,  598-602,  794-800,  vol.  ii.  pp.  398,  400,  vol.  v. 

1846,  pp.  184-214,  and  Nos.  xi.  and  xii.  Of  the  latter  there  is  a  German 
translation,  Neue  Untersuchungen  uber  die  Topographie  Jerusalems „ 



in  his  kindling  into  life  that  great  interest  in  the  topography 
of  the  Bible  scenes,  which  has  prompted  a  very  high  class  of 
minds  to  explore  the  region  with  exhaustive  skill, — men  like 
Schultz,  Krafft,  Tobler,  and  Gadow,  whose  works  I  shall  have 
occasion  further  on  to  use  so  largely,  that  I  forbear  speaking 
of  them  in  detail  here. 

The  readers  of  the  preceding  volume  have  already  had  occa¬ 
sion  to  observe,  that  in  some  cases,  where  the  progress  of  recent 
discovery  would  seem  to  justify  it,  I  have  not  hesitated  to  draw 
different  conclusions  from  those  reached  by  my  honoured 
friend.  Instances  will  occur  in  connection  with  Mount  Sinai 
and  Kadesh-Barnea.  The  superficial  and  not  seldom  bitter 
criticism  which  has  fallen  upon  him  from  prelatical  England 
and  from  Catholic  France,  and  the  unworthy  efforts  which 
have  been  made  in  those  two  countries  to  undermine  the  results 
gained  by  the  distinguished  American,  are  in  strong  contrast 
with  the  thorough  and  impartial  reviews  of  his  work  which 
have  appeared  in  Germany.  Such  assaults  would  never  have 
been  made  by  men  who  stopped  to  consider  what  wrere  the 
fundamental  principles  of  Robinson’s  method  of  investigation  : 
they  are  such  as  would  be  impracticable  in  many  pilgrimages 
to  the  Holy  Land  ;  but  in  one  whose  object  was  confessedly 
scientific,  they  are  only  to  be  spoken  of  highly,  and  are  to  be 
used  as  the  correct  standard  of  measuring  all  the  works  on 
Palestine  which  have  been  already  cited  in  these  pages. 

The  two  fundamental  principles  which  Robinson  and  Smith 
have  laid  down  for  their  guidance  in  determining  the  historical 
value  of  the  traditions  of  Palestine,  were  these,  that  different 
weight  is  to  be  attached — (1)  to  the  later  traditions  which  have 
arisen  since  Constantine’s  time,  and  which,  springing  from  the 
changed  ecclesiastical  condition  of  the  land,  have  been  largely 
diffused  by  those  vdio  were  not  the  primeval  inhabitants  of  the 
country,  but  resident  aliens,  so  to  speak ;  and  (2)  to  the  primi¬ 
tive  and  indigenous  traditions,  rooted  deeply  in  the  Semitic 
character,  living  in  the  mouths  of  the  common  people,  and 
perpetuating  themselves  in  the  local  names  of  places,  since  the 
Arabic  now  spoken  is  so  akin  in  its  general  features  to  the 
Hebrew  which  it  has  supplanted,  that  it  changes  but  slightly 
the  old  wmrds,  and  leaves  the  roots  visible ;  while  the  Greek 
never  took  a  firm  or  lasting  hold,  and  never  grafted  itself  upon 



tlie  national  life  of  the  land.  The  names  Diospolis,  Nicopolis, 
Ptolemais,  and  Antipatris,  have  long  since  disappeared;  while 
the  still  older  names  of  Lydda,  Emmaus,  and  others  which  will 
readily  recur  to  the  reader’s  mind,  are  still  found  in  the  Ludd 
and  Amwas  of  the  present  day.  These  indigenous  words  were 
never  regarded  as  important  by  the  Byzantine  ecclesiastical 
authorities;  nor  were  they  observed  by  the  earlier  travellers, 
who  surrendered  themselves  unreservedly  to  the  guidance  of 
monks,  and  contentedly  received  whatever  they  told  them.  But 
the  more  ancient  tradition  both  Robinson  and  Smith  found 
never  to  deceive  them ;  while  that  which  was  more  modern 
continually  appealed  to  other  sources  of  testimony  in  confirma¬ 
tion  of  itself,  especially  the  Bible,  while  it  very  often  stood  in 
direct  antagonism  even  to  that  to  which  it  appealed.  Seetzen 
had  even  earlier  called  attention  to  the  value  of  the  primitive 
Semitic  traditions ;  for  he  too  had  found,  in  the  neighbourhood  of 
the  Dead  Sea,  and  in  the  lower  valley  of  the  Jordan,  many  words 
which  carried  him  back  to  the  remotest  antiquity,  and  which 
since  the  time  of  Jerome  had  never  found  a  record  in  literature. 
Of  such  names  Robinson  collected  a  vast  number,  all  of  them 
of  the  utmost  importance  in  enabling  him  to  exhume,  as  it  were, 
the  ancient  topography  of  Palestine. 

In  order  to  gain  unbiassed  results,  the  American  traveller* 
shunned  all  the  convents  on  their  route,  which  had  before  been 
the  almost  exclusive  lodging-places  of  pilgrims  (Burckhardt  and 
Ruppell  being  the  only  exceptions).  They  abjured  the  com¬ 
panionship  and  the  guidance  of  monks,  shunned  the  usual 
routes  of  travel ;  but  when  their  materials  were  collected,  they 
compared  them  with  the  often-told  ecclesiastical  traditions,  only 
to  the  manifest  falseness  and  untrustworthiness,  be  it  said,  of 
the  latter.  Three  periods  are  to  be  discriminated,  however,  in 
the  gradual  formation  of  these  discarded  traditions;  and,  as  a 
general  principle,  their  value  grows  greater  as  we  recede  from 
the  present  time.  The  first  period  is  that  of  the  fourth  century, 
whose  representatives  are  the  Itinerarium  Hierosolymitanum  and 
the  Onomcisticon  of  Eusebius  and  Jerome,  and  the  other  writings 
of  the  last-named  divine.  In  these  works  there  is  a  blending 
of  ecclesiastical  hypotheses  and  of  popular  words  which  dis¬ 
appear  in  the  later  literature,  but  which  Robinson  found  to 
survive  in  the  mouths  of  the  common  people.  The  second 



period  is  that  of  the  Crusades,  whose  traditions  are  the  most 
fully  portrayed  in  Brocardus,  1283, — a  work  of  far  greater 
value,  in  consequence  of  its  compact  topographical  descriptions, 
than  the  two  thick  folios  of  Quaresmius,  written  in  the  middle 
of  the  seventeenth  century.  In  him  the  follies  of  the  eccle¬ 
siastical  traditions  come  to  their  height. 

Following  their  uniform  plan  of  travel,  Robinson  and  Smith 
did  not  lodge  in  the  convents,  but  in  the  open  air,  or  in  the 
houses  of  the  people,  employed  the  Syrians  as  their  guides, 
and  struck  across  the  country  through  the  most  retired  and  un¬ 
explored  byways.  Nor  did  they  ask  direct  questions,  which 
usually  get  the  answer  which  the  Arab  thinks  the  questioner 
wants ;  but  by  the  most  indirect  interrogatories  and  cross 
questions,  and  by  comparing  the  answers  gained  from  different 
persons,  they  at  last  felt,  in  most  cases  at  least,  that  they  had 
in  some  measure  attained  the  actual  facts.  The  services  of  Mr 
Smith,  who  had  for  many  years  been  a  missionary  in  Syria, 
and  was  perfectly  familiar  with  the  popular  speech,  were  indis¬ 
pensable.  Each  traveller  kept  his  own  journal,  but  there  was 
no  comparison  on  the  way:  it  was  only  when  the  work  was 
composed,  that  the  whole  material  was  canvassed,  and  the  results 

,  With  these  remarks,  which  seemed  a  necessary  preliminary 
to  the  free  use  of  Robinson’s  materials,  I  close  my  review  of 
the  published  authorities  on  Palestine.  I  must  not  withhold 
the  very  cordial  thanks  which  I  owe,  however,  to  those  gentle¬ 
men  who  have  not  published  the  record  of  their  travels,  but 
who  have  favoured  me  with  the  free  use  of  the  manuscripts. 


The  accumulation  of  material  in  the  works  mentioned  above 
has  awakened  a  lively  interest  in  Palestine,  and  prompted  the 
desire  to  explore  more  in  detail  what  had  been  left  for  others 
to  examine.  The  spirit  of  these  investigators  is  a  delightful 
one,  and  the  results  are  in  many  cases  very  valuable,  probing 
the  subject  to  the  depths  without  losing  themselves  in  its 
breadth.  And  I  must  here  acknowledge  the  value  of  the 




monographs,  special  papers,  and  briefer  notes  in  some  cases, 
which  have  been  communicated  in  both  printed  and  manuscript 
form,  and  in  some  cases  by  word  of  mouth.  I  can  only  cite 
the  most  important  of  them;  for  they  are,  in  most  cases,  so 
scattered  as  to  be  inaccessible  for  reference  should  the  reader 
desire  a  nearer  acquaintance  with  their  contents. 

Upon  the  hypsometrical  observations  made  on  the  Isthmus 
of  Suez,  in  the  valley  of  the  Jordan,  and  in  the  basin  of  the 
Dead  Sea : 

Letronne,  sur  la  Separation  primitive  des  Bassins  de  la  Mer 
Morte  et  de  la  Mer  Rouge ,  et  sur  la  difference  de  niveau  entre 
la  Mer  Rouge  et  la  Mediterranee ,  Paris  1839.  The  same,  in 
Journ.  des  Savans ,  1835,  Aout  et  Oct.;  and  Col.  Callier, 
Retire  in  Journ.  des  Savans ,  Jan.  1836  and  Aout  1838.  Com¬ 
pare  Callier,  Note  in  Bulletin  de  la  Soc.  Geogr.  Paris,  Aout 

Letronne,  Ustlime  de  Suez;  le  Canal  de  junction  de  deux 
mersy  sous  les  Grecs ,  les  Romains ,  et  les  Arabes .  Revue  de  deux 

Mondes,  15  Juill.  1841. 

J.  Vetch,  Inquiry  into  the  Means  of  a  Ship  Navigation 
between  the  Mediterranean  and  Red  Seas ,  London  1843. 

Von  Wildenbuch,  Memoire  uber  das  Nivellement  der  Band- 
enge  Suez  von  Negrelli ;  and  Dr  Abeken,  uber  die  Landenge 
Suez  in  Beziehung  auf  ihren  fruhern  Zustandy  nach  Localunter- 
suchungen.  Both  in  MS. 

Compte  Jules  de  Bertou,  Itineraire  de  la  Mer  Morte  par  la 
Ghor  a  Akabay  et  retour  a  Hebrony  1838,  in  the  Bulletin  de  la 
Soc.  de  Geogr.  de  Paris ,  T.  xi.  Paris  1839 ;  also  Capt.  Callier, 
Note  T.  x.  1838. 

Compte  Jules  de  Bertou,  Memoire  sur  la  Depression  de  la 
Vallee  du  Jour  dam,  et  du  lac  Asphaltite ;  in  the  Bulletin  above 
quoted,  tom.  xii.  1839,  i.  pp.  133-135,  and  P.  ii.  Nivellement 
du  Jourdairty  pp.  135,  136,  with  maps. 

J.  Russegger,  uber  die  Depression  des  Todten  Meers  und  des 
ganzen  J ordanthals  vom  See  Tiberias  bis  zum  Wadi  el  Ghor, 
in  Poggend.  Anna!  vol.  liii.  No.  xvi.  pp.  179-194. 

E.  Robinson,  Appendix  xxxvii.  on  the  statements  of  Bertou. 

G.  II.  Moore  and  W.  G.  Beke,  on  the  Dead  Sea  and  some 
Positions  in  Syria ,  in  Journ.  of  the  Roy.  Geog.  Soc.  of  Jjoncl. 
1837,  vol.  vii.;  and  in  Bibliotheca  Sacra7  New  York  1843. 

7  G 


Dr  G.  Par  they,  uber  die  Einsenkungen  unter  das  Niveau  des 
Meeres ,  1838,  ms. 

Dr  Daubeny,  The  Destruction  of  Sodom  and  Gomorrah , 
occasioned  by  Volcanic  Action ,  in  Jameson,  Edinburgh  Phil . 
Journal ,  Nov.  1826. 

Alex.  v.  Humboldt,  uber  die  Depression  des  Jordanthales , 
in  bis  Central  Asia ,  also  in  bis  Cosmos.  [Ritters  references 
are  to  the  German  edition.] 

Yon  Wildenbruch,  Routiers  in  Palastina  und  Syrien ,  in 
Monatsberichte  der  Ges ells chaft  fur  Erdkunde ,  Neue  Folge ,  Pt.  i. 
1843;  bis  Vertical  Section  from  Joppa  to  the  Dead  Sea  by  way 
of  Jerusalem ,  and  from  Jerusalem  to  Lake  Tiberias  and  the 
Sources  of  the  Jordan ,  Pt.  iii. ;  the  Vertical  Section  from  Beirut 
to  Damascus ,  Pt.  iv. ;  and  the  same  on  the  Climatology  of 
Palestine ,  Pt.  i. 

Dr  De  Forest,  Contributions  to  the  Climatology  of  Palestine, 
in  Bibliotheca  Sacra ,  New  York  1844. 

K.  y.  Raumer,  Das  ostliche  Palastina  und  das  Land  Edom , 
in  Berghaus’  Annalen ,  Feb.  1830;  the  same,  Jas  ostjordanische 
Judaa ,  1834,  in  Litter arischer  Anzeiger  fur  Christliche  Theo- 
logie  und  Wissens.  1834,  Nos.  i.  and  ii.;  the  same,  Beitrdge  zur 
biblischen  Geographic ,  Leipsig  1843 ;  the  same,  Abhandlung 
der  tertiaire  Kalkstein  bei  Paris  und  der  Kalkstein  des  westlichen 

To  these  may  be  added  many  new  topographical  discoveries 
on  new  routes  or  in  special  localities,  some  of  the  most  important 
of  which  are: 

Major  Robe,  Country  about  the  Sources  of  the  Jordan ,  in 
Bibliotheca  Sacra ,  New  York  1843. 

Sam.  Wolcott,  Excursion  from  Jerusalem  via  Nazareth  to 
Sidon  and  Beirut ,  in  a  letter  to  Eli  Smith,  in  Bib.  Sacra ,  1843. 

Eli  Smith,  Visit  to  Antipatris ,  1843,  in  Bib.  Sacra. 

Sam.  Wolcott,  Excursion  to  Masada ,  in  the  same;  also, 
Excursion  from  Sidon  to  Baalbek  and  Lebanon,  in  the  same ; 
also,  Excursion  to  Alar  Saba ,  in  the  same. 

W.  M.  Thompson,  The  Sources  of  the  Jordan ,  the  Lake  el- 
Huleh ,  and  the  adjacent  Country ,  in  Bib.  Sacra ,  New  York 

W .  M.  Thompson,  Journal  of  a  Visit  to  Safet  and  Tiberias , 
in  the  Missionary  Herald ,  Boston,  Nov.  1837,  xxxiii.;  Noll 



and  Moore,  in  the  Journ .  of  the  Roy.  Geog.  Soc.  of  London , 
vol.  vii. 

E.  Robinson’s  monographs  on  the  following  subjects : — 
Eleutheropolis ,  in  Bib.  Sacra ,  1843;  on  Eleutheropolis ,  in 
/Sue.  1844 ;  on  Arimathcea ,  in  jBz'5.  /Sue.  1843 ;  on  Ramah 
of  Samuel ,  Bib.  Sac.  1844 ;  on  Legio ,  Megiddo ,  Maximian- 
opolisy  in  the  same,  vol.  ii.  1844 ;  on  Gibeah  of  Saul ,  Rachel's 
Sepulchre ,  in  B.  Sac.  1844,  vol.  i. ;  on  the  City  of  Ephraim ,  the 
same,  vol.  ii. 

C.  Gaillardot,  Carte  approximative  der  Led] a  et  des  contrees 
environnantes ,  dressee  pendant  la  campagne  cT Ibrahim  Pacha 
contre  les  Druzes ,  1838.  Taf.  ii.  in  Berlin  Monatsber.  d.  Geogr. 
Gesellsch.  1 V.  Folge ,  1846,  vol.  iii. 

E.  G.  Schultze,  Prussian  Consul,  The  manuscript  Record  of 
Six  Visits  made  to  Districts  of  Palestine  very  little  known ,  from 
1845  1847,  containing  some  discoveries,  contained  in  a  letter 

dated  Beirut,  Jan.  29,  1848.  I  may  be  permitted  to  add,  that 
very  important  investigations  are  now  going  on  under  the  direc¬ 
tion  of  Mr  Schultze,  and  that  the  account  of  his  journey  through 
the  whole  province  of  Galilee,  with  the  original  documents 
relating  to  the  Knights  of  St  John,  and  their  possessions  there 
during  the  Crusades,  in  his  hand,  will  be  received  with  great 

I  may  also  express  my  personal  obligation  for  extracts  from 
letters  written  by  Baruch  Auerbach  in  1828 ;  Dr  Jost,  1830 ; 
Shwebel  Mieg,  1832;  A.  Bram,  1834;  W.  G.  Beke,  1837; 
E.  Gross,  1844 ;  as  well  as  for  the  use  of  the  journals  of  Dr 
W.  Krafft  1845,  Dr  Barth  1847,  and  Mr  Gadow.1 

J.  v.  Hammer-Purgstall,  Syrien ,  nach  dem  Dschihannuma 
des  Hadscld  Chalfa.  in  Wien.  Jahr.  cl.  Liter atur.  1836,  vol.  lxxiv. 

pp.  1-102. 

In  the  Journ.  of  the  Roy.  Geog.  Soc.  of  London ,  vol.  xviii. 
p.  2,  1848,  are  three  important  papers  relating  to  the  hydro- 
graphical  character  of  Palestine :  Robinson,  Depression  of  the 
Dead  Sea  and  of  the  Jordan  Valley;  Augustus  Petermann,  on 
the  Fall  of  the  Jordan;  Lieutenant  Molineux,  Expedition  to 
the  Jordan  and  the  Dead  Sea ,  March  1848.  The  last  contains 

1  H.  Gadow,  Am  fug  von  Jerusalem  uber  Jericho  au  den  Jordan ,  das 
Todte  Meer  und  nach  Mar  Saba ,  in  Zeitsch.  der  d.  morgenl.  Gesell.  vol.  ii. 
1848,  pp.  52-65. 



the  record  of  the  first  successful  navigation  and  sounding  of 
Lake  Tiberias  and  the  Dead  Sea. 

A  great  store  of  special  observations  relating  to  the  upper 
valley  of  the  Jordan,  and  particularly  its  inhabitants,  the  people 
of  the  Lebanon,  Anti-Lebanon,  and  Hasbeiya,  is  contained  in 
the  uncommonly  valuable,  and  in  original  authorities  very  rich, 
Missionary  Herald ,  Boston,  U.S.,  in  vols.  xxxiii.  1837,  and  xliii. 
1847,  for  whose  welcome  use  during  the  years  indicated  I  wish 
here  to  avow  my  deepest  thanks  and  great  obligations  to  the 
Board  of  American  Commissioners  for  Foreign  Missions,  and  to 
the  editors  of  the  Herald.  These  thanks  will  only  be  confirmed 
in  the  course  of  this  work  by  the  evident  service  which  I  have 
drawn  from  the  valuable  writings  of  such  men  as  Eli  Smith, 
W.  Thompson,  De  Forest,  Yan  Lennup,  Calhoun,  Whiting, 
Hurter,  Lanneau,  Yan  Dyck,  Beadle,  and  Hinsdale,  among 
many  others. 

Other  authorities  regarding  Jerusalem  and  northern  Syria 
will  be  cited  further  on,  but  now  I  will  only  append  a  list  of 
some  of  the  most  serviceable  maps  of  Palestine. 



There  exists  a  mass  of  old  maps  of  the  Holy  Land,  so  vast 
that  I  cannot  undertake  to  survey  them  all  and  to  report  upon 
them;  but  the  most  of  them  are  of  interest  only  to  the  anti¬ 
quarian,  or,  at  the  highest,  serve  to  explain  the  older  volumes 
cited  above,  which,  in  fact,  they  were  generally  intended  to 
accompany.  But  the  efforts  of  Seetzen  and  Burckhardt  gave 
a  new  impetus  to  the  chartography  of  Palestine,  which  had 
necessarily  to  grow  slowly  up  into  its  present  fair  proportions, 
rejecting  the  false  and  fanciful  sketches  with  which  our  prede¬ 
cessors  had  to  be  content,  and  gradually  giving  the  true  physical 
and  topographical  character  of  the  land.  Much  is  lacking  even 
yet,  however,  and  much  will  be  lacking  so  long  as  we  are  desti¬ 
tute  of  accurate  astronomical,  trigonometrical,  and  hypsometrical 
observations  taken  over  the  whole  country. 

That  in  the  present  condition  of  affairs  in  Palestine  there 
is  not  much  ground  for  hope  that  this  will  be  accomplished,  is 
evident;  but  it  is  much  to  be  regretted  in  behalf  of  science,  that 



the  results  of  the  trigonometrical  survey  of  the  Jordan  valley 
and  of  the  coast  of  Palestine,  undertaken  by  the  English 
Admiralty,  and  completed  in  1841,  have  not  yet  been  published. 
I  am  very  far  from  wishing  to  blame  the  officers  of  this  branch, 
above  all  praise  of  mine  as  it  is,  and  which  has  undertaken  such 
varied  enterprises,  and  carried  them  on  with  such  energy  and 
with  so  liberal  outlay,  and  to  which  I  am  personally  under  so 
great  obligations;  for  I  know  well  what  are  the  difficulties  which 
must  attend  the  work,  engaged  as  the  Admiralty  is  with  enter¬ 
prises  which  extend  to  every  part  of  the  globe.  But  I  have  to 
regret,  nevertheless,  that  I  have  not  been  able  to  use  the  results 
of  that  survey  as  the  basis  in  part  of  the  present  volume. 
Molineux’s  Memoir ,  already  cited,  is  a  proof  of  the  cordial 
good-wili  which  the  English  Government1  bear  to  the  progress 
of  geographical  science,  as  well  as  that  of  Sir  Francis  Beaufort, 
whose  name  is  held  in  such  estimation,  and  to  whom  I  am 
under  such  a  weight  of  obligations  that  I  might  venture  to  call 
him  with  pride  my  honoured  patron. 

With  Seetzen’s  manuscript  map  of  the  district  from  Damascus 
down  the  valley  of  the  Jordan  to  the  Ghor  at  the  southern 
extremity  of  the  Dead  Sea,  published  in  1810  as  a  supplement 
to  the  Gotha  Monatliche  Correspondenz ,  and  engraved  and  con¬ 
structed  under  the  care  of  Lindenau,2  began  the  correct  know¬ 
ledge  of  the  district  lying  within  the  basin  of  the  Jordan. 
After  this  appeared  the  work  of  the  engineers  Jacotin  and 
Paultre,3  constructed  under  the  auspices  of  the  French  Govern¬ 
ment.  The  possession  of  Egypt  and  south-west  Palestine  by  a 
European  power  occasioned  the  preparation  of  that  great  topo¬ 
graphical  atlas  called  the  Description  de  VEgypte ,  whose  last 
five  plates,  on  a  scale  of  rooooo  ^ie  tme  size>4  comprised  the 
very  valuable  maps  of  Western  Palestine.  On  these  the  coast 
roads  from  Gaza  over  Carmel  and  to  Tyre  and  Sidon  are  laid 
down  with  praiseworthy  detail ;  the  survey  towards  the  interior 

1  W.  J.  Hamilton,  Address  to  the  Roy.  Geog.  Soc.  of  London ,  May  22, 
1848,  p.  16. 

2  Yon  Zach,  Monat.  Corresp.  vol.  xxii.  1810,  pp.  542-552. 

3  Paultre,  Carte  de  la  Syrie ,  Paris  1803. 

4  Carte  topographique  de  la  Egypte  et  de  plusieurs  parties  des  pays 
limitrophes ,  levee  pendant  VExpedit.  de  Varmee  Frangais ,  etc.,  construite  par 
Jacotin,  Colonel;  publ.  par  orclre  clu  Gouvernement. 



of  the  country  extends  only  as  far  as  Jerusalem,  Nablus,  and 
Lake  Tiberias,  and  northward  to  the  neighbourhood  of  el-Huleh 
and  to  the  lower  course  of  the  Leontes ;  beyond  these  limits 
the  power  of  the  French  arms  did  not  extend.  Unfortunately 
the  lack  of  astronomical  observations,  and  a  complete  ignorance 
of  the  longitude,  caused  the  whole  coast  between  Gaza  and  Akka 
to  be  set  one-third  of  a  decree  too  far  eastward.  This  led  to 
much  uncertainty,  which  was  only  removed,  as  far  as  the  northern 
coast  of  Syria  is  concerned,  by  Captain  Gauthier’s  observations, 
1816-20,  but  which  remains  in  the  southern  half  to  the  present 
day.  It  will  only  be  removed  when  the  results  of  the  recent  survey 
undertaken  by  the  English  Admiralty  shall  be  published.1 

Whatever  could  be  accomplished  by  acuteness,  and  the  power 
of  combining  the  materials  at  hand,  was  effected  in  a  really 
masterly  way  by  C.  F.  Kloden,2  in  his  map  published  1817, 
which,  however,  he  called,  in  consequence  of  its  small  scale,  a 
mere  first  effort.  With  this  may  worthily  be  compared  the  chart 
constructed  by  Dufour,3  which  ought  to  bring  into  harmonious 
combination  Gauthier’s  topography,  Jacotin’s  surveys,  Paultre’s 
measurements,  Burckhardt’s  routes  of  travel,  and  some  still  more 
recent  observations. 

The  rapid  progress  of  geographical  discovery  in  Palestine, 
due  to  Burckhardt,  Buckingham,  W.  Turner,  Richter,  Ehren- 
berg,  Legh,  and  Henniker,  made  it  possible,  ten  years  later, 
for  Berghaus  to  display  his  well-known  chartographical  talent 
in  the  construction  of  the  map  of  Syria  (Gotha  1835),  to 
accompany  his  masterly  atlas  of  Asia.  This  work  must  be 
reckoned  among  the  most  beautiful  and  most  excellent  models 
of  modern  geographical  skill ;  and  the  admirable  explanation 
furnished  by  the  author  corresponds  happily  with  the  value 
of  the  map  which  it  accompanies.  We  have  no  need  to  speak 
of  the  value  of  this  work  in  full,  for  Berghaus4  has  indi- 

1  Mr  Hamilton,  Address  to  the  Roy.  Geog.  Soc.  of  London ,  May  22, 1848, 
p.  lxxiv. ;  and  Murchison,  Address ,  May  26,  1845,  p.  cxxiii.  in  vol.  xiv., 
and  p.  cvii.  in  vol.  xv.  [The  English  maps  are  now  issued.] 

2  C.  F.  Kloden,  Landeskunde  von  Palestina,  Berlin  1847.  See  Preface 
to  the  Map,  pp.  125-140. 

3  A.  H.  Dufour,  Carte  de  la  Palestine  adoptee  par  le  Conseil  Roy.  de 
V Instruct,  publ.  Paris  1825;  together  with  Analyse  geographiqne ,  etc. 

4  H.  Berghaus,  Geographisches  Memoir  zur  Erkldrung  und  Erldnterung 



cated  in  the  most  complete  manner  his  sources  and  his  principles 
of  construction,  and  collected  a  rich  store  of  authentic  and  well- 
arranged  data.  His  work  opens  a  new  era  in  the  chartography 
of  Palestine  and  Syria. 

I  may  remark  of  Berghaus’  map,  however,  without  entering 
into  detailed  panegyric,  that  one  great  excellence  consists  in 
the  clear  and  accurate  portrayal  of  the  routes  taken  by  such 
travellers  as  Burckhardt,  Buckingham,  Bichter,  and  others,  as 
well  as  by  the  artistic  and  yet  very  natural  manner  in  which 
it  displays  the  varying  elevation  of  the  land,  and  fills  in,  in  a 
manner  which  would  hardly  be  suspected,  and  in  accordance 
with  his  own  fancy,  controlled  by  the  analogies  of  place  and  cir¬ 
cumstance,  a  mass  of  conjectural  details  to  supply  the  deficiency 
of  personal  knowledge.  This,  although  not  warranted  by  all  the 
circumstances,  is  the  best  thing  that  can  be  done  until  the  whole 
country  shall  be  thoroughly  explored;  for  it  prevents  that  sharp 
contrast  between  those  parts  of  the  map  which  display  regions 
accurately  examined,  and  those  with  which  we  are  as  yet  unac¬ 
quainted,  and  serves  to  bridge  over  the  necessary  blank  space. 
And  how  accurately  Berghaus  has  done  this  conjectural  work, 
may  be  seen  by  comparing  his  map  with  the  statements  of  E. 
G.  Schultze,  made  after  his  journey  of  discovery  in  1847,  when 
he  traversed  the  country  between  Jebel  Safed,  north-west  of 
Lake  Tiberias,  and  Belad  Bjerre,  south-east  of  Sur  (Tyre),  and 
south  of  the  Leontes ;  a  region  which  that  traveller  describes 
as  poetry  itself. 

If  the  absolute  meagreness  of  personal  observations  made  it 
imperatively  necessary  to  fill  in  his  map  with  the  fancies  which 
Berghaus’  own  imagination  suggested,  another  want  has  impaired 
its  accuracy  in  another  respect.  The  mathematical  observations 
which  had  been  taken  when  it  wras  constructed,  were  so  few  in 
number,  that  no  minute  triangulation  of  the  whole  country  could 
possibly  be  effected;  and  it  was  impossible  to  calculate  the  angles 
and  estimate  nicely  the  distances  without  making  some  errors. 
Yet  the  thorough  manner  in  which  the  work  was  done,  so  far 
as  the  larger  triangulation  is  concerned,  is  so  remarkable  that 
minor  corrections  can  easily  be  entered,  and  the  whole  attain 
an  accuracy  which  is  not  at  all  possible  in  one  of  those  most 

der  Karte  von  Syrien ,  Gotha  1835,  pp.  1-48.  See  a  review  of  this  by  von 
Raumer,  in  Jaihrb.  fiir  wissensclicift.  Kritik ,  Feb.  1836,  No.  27,  p.  211. 

VOL.  II.  F 



inaccurate  and  superficial  productions  which  the  mere  map- 
makers  turn  out  so  abundantly  to  mislead  the  public.  The 
weakest  point  of  Berghaus’  work,  however,  is  one  that  has  been 
referred  to  by  others1 — its  great  deficiency  in  what  relates  to 
biblical  geography. 

Yet  the  map  of  Palestine  prepared  still  later  by  von  Raumer 
did  not,  with  all  its  accuracy,  surpass  its  predecessor.  It  is, 
however,  a  work  of  great  merit ;  and  in  its  mechanical  con¬ 
struction  and  its  historical  character  it  did  much  to  pave  the 
way  for  a  subsequent  map,2  smaller  in  scale,  but  very  thorough 
and  very  satisfactory  to  Bible  students.  I  must  not  omit  to 
refer  to  one  prepared  by  the  accomplished  J.  L.  Grimm,  very 
valuable  in  its  character,  but  lithographed  in  a  hard  and  taste¬ 
less  manner.3  Its  scale  was  -900000  ^ie  natural  size;  its 
date  of  publication  was  1830. 

Like  geology,  geography  is  a  young  and  progressive  science  : 
it  knows  no  pause,  and  with  each  year  it  gains  new  ground, 
and  pierces  to  new  depths ;  and  hardly  five  years  had  passed 
after  the  efforts  last  referred  to  had  culminated  in  their  great 
perfection,  when  rich  material  had  gathered  itself  so  profusely 
in  this  field,  that  it  was  necessary  to  construct  a  new  and  inde¬ 
pendent  map  of  Palestine,  which  should,  so  far  as  the  eastern 
shore  of  the  Jordan  is  concerned,  do  little  more  than  repeat 
what  Berghaus  had  already  given,  but  which  in  all  that  makes 
up  Palestine  proper,  should  be  an  original  work.  This  task, 
which  was  to  illustrate  Robinson’s  Biblical  Researches ,  was 
accomplished  by  H.  Kiepert  in  so  masterly  a  manner,  and  in 
every  respect  so  thoroughly  scientific  a  spirit,  as  to  win  the 
applause  of  all  scientific  judges,  and  to  be  the  model  for  all 
following  works  of  its  kind.  The  thousands  of  angles  and 
measurements  taken  down  by  Robinson  and  Smith  in  their 
journeys  by  highways  and  byways,  though  lacking  to  a  cer¬ 
tain  extent  the  perfect  accuracy  of  astronomical  observations, 
have  been  applied  so  acutely  and  with  such  fine  appreciation 

1  See  Hiller's  excellent  review  of  von  Eaumer's  Palestine ,  and  of  Berg- 
haus'  map,  in  Anzeiger  der  Kdnigl.  Bayr.  Akad.  der  WissenscUaften ,  Munich 
1836,  No.  236,  pp.  837-936. 

2  Karte  von  Paidstina  nach  zuverlassigsten  alten  und  neuen  Quellen,  von 
K.  v.  Raumer  und  F.  v.  Stiilpnagel.  Gotha,  J.  Perthes. 

3  Paidstina ,  von  J.  L.  Grimm,  Berlin  1830. 



of  the  meaning  of  his  guides  by  Kiepert,  that  I  need  only  refer 
to  his  own  memoir  for  the  best  and  yet  most  modest  eulogy  of 
the  work.1  It  is  enough  to  say,  that  accurate  and  close  as  were 
the  descriptions  and  measurements  of  Burckhardt,  those  of 
the  American  travellers  surpass  even  his.  The  two  maps  of 
Palestine  are  on  the  scale  of  koodoo  °f  the  size  of  nature,  that 
of  Arabia  Petnea  only  one-half  of  that.  But  in  order  to  meet 
the  universal  want  of  a  good  map  of  Palestine  for  general  use, 
and  to  still  keep  true  to  the  latest  discoveries  and  the  highest 
scientific  character,  while  shunning  the  shallowness  and  imper¬ 
fection  which  the  works  of  mere  tinkers  display,  Kiepert  pub¬ 
lished,  in  1842,  a  map  of  Palestine  of  reduced  size,2 3  on  the 
scale  of  gobobo  of  the  natural  size.  This  came  to  a  second 
edition  in  1843.  In  this  work,  not  only  did  he  retain  the  clear 
display  of  elevation  which  characterized  the  larger  maps,  but 
he  published  a  new  and  original  map  of  the  country  east  of  the 
Jordan,  not  following  Berghaus  any  longer,  but  using  still  more 
recent  materials  than  his  predecessor  had  enjoyed.  And  at  the 
time  of  my  writing  these  words,  Kiepert  is  engaged  in  revising 
the  last-mentioned  map,  and  in  adding  the  results  of  the  very 
latest  investigations,  involving  a  labour  of  which  the  copyists  of 
copyists  have  no  conception, — the  men  who  follow  their  own  taste 
and  fancy,  and  think  that  a  medley  of  names,  thickly  sown,  and 
handsome  colouring  and  artistic  engraving,  constitute  a  valuable 
map.  They  confuse  dates,  names,  and  varieties  of  spelling  in 
the  most  irregular  manner,  and  do  more  to  perplex  than  to 
enli<jhten  the  student  who  consults  them.  A  mono;  the  most 
noteworthy  of  these,  which  I  purposely  forbear  to  speak  of  in 
any  fulness,  is  unfortunately  to  be  reckoned  a  map  of  Palestine, 
drawn  by  the  estimable  Jean  van  de  Cotte,2  and  published  at 
Brussels  by  the  Vandermaelen  establishment;  a  very  attractive 
work,  but  of  which  it  is  enough  to  say  in  a  single  word,  that, 
as  the  accompanying  memoir  indicates,  though  claiming  to 

1  Atlas  in  fiinf  Bldtt.  zu  Robinson's  Palestina ,  construirt  von  Heinrich 
Kiepert,  und  lithograpliirt  von  W.  Malilmann,  Berlin  1840-41. 

2  Karte  von  Palestine  nach  Robinson  und  Smith ,  bcarbeitet  von  II.  Kiepert, 
lierausgegeben  von  C.  Bitter.  Berlin,  Schropp,  1843. 

3  Carte  topographique  de  la  Palestine ,  dresser  d’apres  la  carte  topo- 
grapliique  de  Jacotin,  beaucoup  augmentee  par  Jean  van  de  Cotte,  cure. 
Bruxelles  1847. 



be  the  product  of  five  years’  labour,  it  completely  ignores  tbe 
labours  of  Bobinson  and  Kiepert,  and  while  using  the  works 
of  Berghaus  and  Jacotin,  yet  appeals  to  the  very  earliest 
chartographical  efforts  relating  to  Palestine,  and  places  the 
maps  produced  in  the  middle  ages — those  of  Brocardus,  Adri- 
chomius,  etc. — in  the  same  rank,  and  by  the  side  of  those  which 
have  incorporated  the  discoveries  of  Malte  Brun,  Chateaubriand, 
Lamartine,  and  Geramb,  serving  up  the  whole  legendary 
medley  under  the  name  of  a  topographical  map  of  Palestine. 
Par  more  faithful  are  the  two  American  works  just  published, 
that  of  Colton  in  New  York,  and  of  Tracy  in  Boston,  who  have 
followed  the  latest  and  best  authorities,  much  as  they  have  left 
to  be  desired.1 

To  the  fresh  contributions  which  have  been  made  to  the 
materials  available  for  chartographical  purposes,  in  addition  to 
the  recent  routes  opened  across  the  et-Tih  desert  by  Kussegger, 
Callier,  and  Abeken,  there  are  the  following  to  be  appended  : 

A  very  valuable  map  of  the  whole  western  section  of  the 
upper  valley  of  the  Jordan  has  been  prepared  under  the 
auspices  of  the  French  Government,  but  which  has  unfortu¬ 
nately  not  yet  been  published.  The  scale  is  -jnroWff  °f  nature. 
I  possess  this  work  through  the  kindness  of  Col.  Callier,  and  I 
can  only  regret  that  it  is  not  accompanied  by  letterpress,  which 
would  add  so  much  to  its  value.  This  is,  in  a  certain  measure, 
supplied  by  the  hasty  sketch2  which  he  has  given  of  his  -wander¬ 
ings3  through  Syria,  which  extended  from  Gaza  and  Hebron  to 
the  sources  of  the  Jordan  and  the  Orontes,  as  far  northward 
indeed  as  to  Tripoli.  Callier’s  map  gives  also  the  routes  of 
Beaufort  de  Hautpouls  and  of  A.  de  Caramans. 

Major  Bobe,  Country  around  the  Sources  of  the  Jordan ,  from 

1  Samuel  Wolcott,  in  Bill.  Sacra,  vol.  iv.  1845,  pp.  588-590. 

2  Carte  de  la  Syrie  meridionale,  et  de  la  Palestine ,  dressee  en  1835,  d’apres 
les  ordres  du  Directeur  du  Depot  General  de  la  Guerre,  Lieut. -Gen.  Pelet, 
p.  Camille  Callier,  Chef  d’Escadr.  au  Corps  Roy.  d’Etat  Major,  d’apres 
ses  observations  et  reconnaissances  faites  en  1832  a  1833,  a  l’Eckelle  de 

_ i _ 


3  Camille  Callier,  Voyage  en  Asie  Mineure,  Syrie,  etc.,  Memoire  in  Bull, 
de  la  Soc.  de  Geogr.  de  Paris,  Jan.  1835,  2  ser.  T.  iii.  pp.  7-22.  Com¬ 
pare  C.  Callier  et  Poulain  de  Bossay,  Note  sur  quelques  explorations  a  faire 
en  Syrie,  en  Palestine,  et  dans  V Arable  Petree,  in  Bullet,  etc.  T.  ix.  1838, 
pp.  40-49. 



the  Bibliotheca  Sacra ,  1843  ;  a  map  accompanying  an  article 
already  referred  to.1 

Plate  V.  to  accompany  the  text  of  L.  von  Wildenbrucli’s 
article  already  mentioned,  contains  his  routes  in  Syria  and 
Palestine,  very  carefully  detailed. 

E.  Gaillardot’s  Map  of  the  Ledja ,  1838 ;  in  the  Monatsb. 

A  small  sketch  prepared  by  S.  Wolcott  to  illustrate  the  west 
coast  of  the  Dead  Sea,  and  giving  the  situation  of  Masada. 

The  publication  of  the  Admiralty  survey  of  Syria  would 
revolutionize  the  existing  state  of  knowledge,  and  would  make 
it  necessary  to  reconstruct  the  maps  of  Palestine  cle  novo.  It 
is  to  be  hoped  that  that  event  will  take  place,2  and  that  the 
world  will  be  enabled  to  enjoy  the  valuable  results  of  that 
expedition  which  owes  so  much  to  the  liberality  of  the  English 

The  results  of  this  survey  will  embody  the  trigonometrical 
observations  and  the  vertical  measurements  between  the  Medi¬ 
terranean  Sea  and  the  valley  of  the  Jordan,  and  will  establish 
the  height  of  its  lakes  as  compared  with  the  sea-level.  The 
points  of  triangulation  embraced  Jaffa,  Jerusalem,  and  the 
Dead  Sea,  at  the  south;  and  Cape  Blanco,  Safed,  and  Lake 
Tiberias,  at  the  north.3  Valuable  as  have  been  the  labours  of 
von  Schubert,  de  Bertou,  Bussegger,  Moore,  Beke,  De  Molineux, 
and  von  IVildenbruch,  they  can  be  regarded  as  merely  pre¬ 
liminary  to  the  perfected  efforts  which  have  been  made  under 
the  auspices  of  the  English  Government. 

It  may  not  be  unprofitable  to  specify  some  of  the  illustrated 
works  which  have  contributed  to  our  more  complete  knowledge 
of  the  Holy  Land. 

Eighty  very  beautiful  views  of  the  most  striking  landscapes 
in  Palestine,  executed  on  steel  by  the  celebrated  artist  Bartlett.4 

1  Berlin  Monatsber.  der  geograph.  Gesellsch.  das  4  Jahrg.  1843,  Tab.  1, 
p.  125. 

2  Murchison,  Address ,  etc.  1844,  p.  cxxiii.;  and  1845,  p.  cviii.  [It 
should  be  added  that  Ritter’s  wish  has  now  been  accomplished. — Ed.] 

3  Vvr.  R.  Hamilton,  Address ,  etc.  22d  May  1843,  p.  lxxiv. 

4  The  Christian  in  Palestine,  or  Scenes  of  Sacred  History,  Historical  and 
Descriptive ,  by  H.  Stebbing ;  illustrated  from  sketches  taken  on  the  spot 
by  W.  H.  Bartlett,  London. 



By  the  same  artist,  in  folio  form,  Comparative  View  of  the 
Situation  and  Extent  of  ancient  and  modern  Jerusalem;  from 
sketches  taken  on  the  spot  by  W.  H.  Bartlett,  and  lithographed 
by  J.  C.  Bourne,  London. 

The  views  taken  by  the  Scotch  painter,  David  Roberts,1  are 
of  the  very  highest  order  of  merit,  giving  a  faithful  representa¬ 
tion  not  only  of  the  landscape,  but  also  of  the  architecture  of 
the  country. 

In  addition  to  these  excellent  authorities  relating  to  the 
geography  of  Palestine,  there  is  another  class  to  be  added,  the 
same  which  is  met  in  all  the  other  ancient  homes  of  civilisation, 
namely  that  derived  from  architecture,  inscriptions,  and  coins,2 
although  such  are  less  common  here  than  in  many  other  coun¬ 
tries  where  the  arts  once  flourished.  They  will  be  referred  to 
in  subsequent  pages,  for  the  study  of  them  has  progressed  to 
a  considerable  extent.  The  architecture  of  the  Romans  is  dis¬ 
criminated  from  that  of  the  Saracens  and  Crusaders,  and  a 
large  number  of  inscriptions  have  been  successfully  deciphered.3 

[Taking  up  this  point  where  Ritter  has  left  it,  I  subjoin  a 
list  of  all  works,  important  papers,  and  maps  relating  to  the 
Holy  Land  between  the  commencement  of  1852  and  the  close 
of  1865.  It  is  believed  that  the  catalogue  is  nearly  perfect. — 

De  St  Martin  :  Les  vieux  Voyageurs  a  la  Terre  Sainte  d’en 
xivme  and  xvime  Sieele.  Nouv.  Annal.  d.  Yoy.  1853. 

Strauss,  E.  A. :  Sinai  und  Golgotha. 

Recentes  explorations  faites  en  diveres  parties  de  la  Palestine 
depuis  le  voyage  de  Smith  et  Robinson :  1.  Recherches  du 

1  La  Terre  Sainte ,  Vues  et  Monuments ,  recueillis  par  David  Roberts,  de 
l’Academie  Roy.  de  Londres,  avec  une  description  liistorique  sur  chaque 
Planche,  edit.  Bruxelles,  Soc.  de  Beaux  Arts,  folio,  1843-1845,  10 

2  A.  Boeckh,  Corpus  Inscript.  Grxcarum ,  vol.  iii.  Fascic.  i.  Berolini, 
fob  1844  ;  Pars  xxvi.  Sec.  v.  Palxstina ,  Trachonitis ,  et  Auronitis ,  fol.  244- 
274,  from  No.  4537  to  46G6,  ed.  by  J.  Franz. 

3  Theatrum  bellorum  a  cruce  signatis  gestorum ,  quo  scriptores  illorum 
temporum ,  prxsertim  Arcliiepisc.  Will.  Tijrensis  facilius  intelligerentur ,  man- 
dat.u  llegix  Inscr.  et  humanior.  Letter.  Academ.  disposuit  et  xri  incidit. 
J.  S.  Jacobs.  1842. 



Capt.  Newbold  aux  environs  de  Jerusalem.  Nouv.  Annal. 
de  Voy.  1852-53. 

Schwartz,  J. :  Das  heilige  Land  nach  seiner  ehemaligen  und 
jetzigen  geographischen  Beschaffenheit. 

Plitt,  Tli. :  Skizzen  aus  einer  Reise  nach  dem  heiligen  Land. 

Schiferle,  J. :  Reise  in  das  heilige  Land. 

Gehlen,  F.  J. :  Aus  den  Erlebnissen  und  Forschungen  eines 
png  ers  zum  heil.  Lande. 

Gossler,  Id. :  Pilgerreise  nach  Jerusalem. 

Rathgeber,  A. :  Palastina. 

Robinson,  E. :  Abriss  einer  Reise  in  Palastina  in  1852. 

Zeitsclir.  d.  deutsch.  morgenland.  Gesellsch.  1853. 

Fisk,  G. :  A  Pastor’s  Memorial  of  the  TIoly  Land. 

Cox,  F.  A. :  The  Geography,  Topography,  and  Natural  His¬ 
tory  of  Palestine. 

Guest,  J.  C. :  Geographical  and  Historical  Dictionary  of 

Macdougal,  T.  St  C. :  Outlines  descriptive  of  Modern  Geo¬ 
graphy,  and  a  Short  Account  of  Palestine. 

Bannister,  J.  T. :  A  Survey  of  the  Holy  Land. 

Churton,  H.  B.  W. :  Thoughts  on  the  Land  of  the  Morning. 

Cox,  F.  A.  :  Biblical  Antiquities. 

Wilbraham,  C.  P.  :  Description  of  Canaan. 

Anderson,  J.  :  Wanderings  in  the  Land  of  Israel  and  the 
Wilderness  of  Sinai. 

Three  Weeks  in  Palestine  and  Lebanon. 

Hahn-Hahn  (Countess)  :  From  Jerusalem. 

Terwecoren,  E. :  Bethleem,  D’apres  les  notes  inedites  de  deux 
Voyageurs  Beiges. 

An  Excursion  from  Jericho  to  the  Ruins  of  the  ancient  Cities 
of  Geraza  and  Ammon. 

Lynch,  W.  F. :  The  Narrative  of  the  U.  S.  Expedition  to  the 
Jordan  and  the  Dead  Sea.  Review  in  the  Journal  d. 
Savants,  Sept.  1851  and  Aug.  1852. 

Lynch,  W.  F. :  Official  Report  of  the  above. 

De  Saulcy,  F. :  Voyage  autour  de  la  Mer  Morte  et  dans  les 
terres  bibliques,  execute  de  Decembre  1850  a  Avril  1851. 

The  same,  translated  and  edited,  with  notes,  by  Count  Edw. 
de  Warren.  Reviews  of  the  same  in  the  Dublin  Rev.  Oct. 
1853,  and  the  Athenaeum,  1853. 



De  St  Martin  :  Sur  le  Site  cle  Tzoar  ou  Segor. 

Delesserti,  E. :  Voyage  aux  villes  maudites,  Sodome,  Gomorrhe, 

Tobler,  T. :  Denkblatter  aus  Jerusalem. 

Tlie  same  :  Topographie  von  Jerusalem. 

Zimpel,  C.  F. :  Neue  ortliche  topographisclie  Beleuclitung 
der  heilig.  Weltstadt  Jerusalem. 

Bartlett,  W.  H. :  Walks  about  Jerusalem. 

Mariti:  Etat  present  de  Jerusalem. 

Michon  :  Authenticity  du  Saint-Sepulchre. 

Bartlett :  Forty  Days  in  the  Desert. 

Berggren,  J. :  FI.  Josephus,  der  Fiihrer  und  Irrfiihrer  der 
Pilfer  in  alten  und  neuen  Jerusalem. 

Note  sur  un  voyage  inedite  a  la  Terre  Sainte  en  1470.  Nouv. 
Annal.  d.  Voy.  1854. 

Hilber,  J.  :  Pilgerreise  in  das  heil.  Land  in  1851-2,  pub.  in 

Beiling,  C. :  Der  Christliche  Fiihrer  in  das  heil.  Land. 

Gosse,  P.  IP. :  Ancient  and  Modem  History  of  the  Bivers  of 
the  Bible. 

Newbold  :  On  the  Lake  Pliiala.  Jour.  Boy.  Asiat.  Soc.  1864. 

Fallmeyayer:  Das  Todte  Meer,  Abhand.  der  hist.  Class,  der 
K.  Bayer.  Akad.  d.  Wiss.  1853. 

The  Dead  Sea  and  its  Explorers.  No.  3  in  Library  of  Biblical 

Bitter,  C. :  Mer  Morte  et  ses  bords  :  cours  du  Jourdain.  See 
rinstitut.  ii.  sect.  1853. 

De  Saulcy:  Voy.  autour  de  la  Mer  Morte.  Noticed  in  Nouv. 
Annal.  d.  Voy.  1853.  (See  above.) 

Lynch’s  Work,  translated  into  German  by  Meissner. 

Isambert :  Bapport  sur  les  voyages  de  Lynch  et  Saulcy.  Bullet, 
de  la  Soc.  de  Geos;.  1853. 

De  Saulcy  :  La  Palestine,  etc.  Bevue  de  1’ Orient,  1854. 

Allen,  W. :  An  attempt  to  account  for  numerous  Appearances 
on  the  sides  of  the  Basin  of  the  Dead  Sea.  J  our.  of  the  Boy. 
Geo^.  Soc.  1853. 

The  Jordan  and  Idumaea.  From  the  Monthly  Vol.  of  the  Bek 
Tract  Soc. 

La  Condamine  :  Jerusalem  et  les  lieux  Saints.  Bevue  de 
1  Orient. 



Allen,  W. :  On  the  Watershed  of  Wadi  el  Araba.  Jour,  of 
Roy.  Geog.  Soc.  1853. 

Notes  on  Syria.  Putnam’s  Monthly,  1855. 

Yon  Ivremer  :  Topographie  von  Damascus.  In  Zeitschr.  d.  Iv. 
Akad.  d.  Wissensch.  vol.  vi.  1855. 

La  Syrie  et  la  Palestine.  In  Revue  de  l’Orient,  1855. 

Experiences  in  Mount  Lebanon.  Putnam’s  Monthly,  1855. 

Seetzen,  U.  J. :  Reisen  durch  Syrien,  Palastina,  Phoenicien,  etc. 

Strauss,  F.  A.  :  Sinai  und  Golgotha. 

Enault,  L. :  La  Terre  Sainte.  The  same,  reviewed  by  Malte- 
Brun  in  Nouv.  Annal.  de  Yoy.  1855. 

Pfeiffer,  J. :  Reise  einer  Wienerin  in  das  heil.  Land. 

Konig,  J. :  Palastina. 

Schultz,  E.  W. :  Reise  in  das  gelobte  Land. 

Bassler,  F. :  Das  heilige  Land,  etc. 

Roberts,  D. :  Sketches  in  the  Holy  Land,  Syria,  Idumaea, 
Egypt,  and  Nubia. 

Bernatz,  J.  M. :  Album  des  Heiligen  Landes. 

Allen,  W. :  The  Dead  Sea,  a  New  Route  to  India. 

Kenrick,  J. :  Phoenicia.  The  same,  reviewed  in  the  Nat.  Rev. 

Wortabet,  G.  M. :  Syria  and  the  Syrians. 

Gicquel :  Destruches,  Beyrouth  ;  Situation,  Commerce,  Ac- 
croissement.  Rev.  de  l’Orient,  1856. 

Porter,  J.  L. :  Five  Years  in  Damascus  ;  including  an  account 
of  the  history,  etc.,  of  that  city,  with  travels  and  researches 
in  Palmyra,  Lebanon,  and  the  Hauran. 

Fragmente  aus  einer  Reise  nacli  Syria  und  Palastina.  In  Aus- 
land  for  1856,  No.  11. 

Westhaus,  Th. :  Palastina  oder  das  heilige  Land  zur  Zeit  Jesu. 

Rathgeber,  A. :  Palastina,  Land  und  Yolk. 

Azais  :  Pelerinage  en  Terre  Sainte. 

Ritchie,  AY. :  Azuba,  or  the  Forsaken  Land. 

Stanley,  A.  P. :  Sinai  and  Palestine. 

Yan  de  Yelde,  C.  AY.  M. :  Reise  durch  Syrien  und  Palastina. 
The  same,  in  English  and  Dutch. 

Les  Corrieres  de  Jerusalem.  L’ Athenaeum  Fran^ais. 

Reiseskizzen  aus  Syrien  und  Palastina.  Ausland  1856,  No.  24. 

Guerin,  Y. :  De  ora  Palastinae  a  promontorio  Carmelo  usque 
ad  urbem  Joppam. 



Des  Ritters  Bernard  v.  Hirschfeld  im  J.  1517  unternommene 
und  von  ihm  selbst  beschreibene  Wallfahrt  zum  lieil.  Grabe. 
Herausg.  von  Mencwitz.  In  Mitt.  d.  deutscli.  Ges.  in 
Leipsig,  1856. 

Halm,  II. :  Die  Reise  des  heil.  Willibald  nach  Pallistina. 
Loritz,  P.  M. :  Blatter  ans  dem  Tagebucb  meiner  Pilgerreise. 
Cinq  Annees  de  voyage  en  Orient  par  Israel  Joseph  Benjamin 


Resebeskrifningar  ofwer  Palestina  ocli  Egypten,  etc. 

Beaumont,  W. :  A  Diary  of  a  Journey  to  the  East. 

Robinson,  E.  :  Bib.  Researches  in  Pal.  etc.  3  vols. 

Rosen  :  Ueber  die  Lage  des  alten  Debir  in  Stamme  Juda. 
Zeitsch.  der  d.  Momend.  Gesell.  1857. 


Dupuis,  H.  L.  and  J. :  The  Holy  Places. 

Hoffman,  A.  G. :  Ein  Gang  durch  Jerusalem.  Ausland,  1856, 
No.  43. 

Tobler,  T. :  Die  Baumwollenhohle  in  Jerusalem.  Petermann’s 
Mittheil.  1856. 

Wendt,  R. :  Der  Teicli  Hiskias  und  der  obere  Gihon.  Bullet, 
de  l’Acad.  de  St  Petersbouro*. 


Sinai,  Palestine,  and  Mecca.  A  rev.  in  Ed.  Rev.  1856. 
Syriens  Schiffahrt  und  Handel  in  1855. 

Delatre,  L. :  Esquisse  de  la  Vie  Syrienne.  Rev.  de  I  Orient, 

Reiseskizzen  aus  Syrienund  Paliistina.  Ausland,  1856,  No.  40. 
Farman,  S.  :  Damascus  and  some  of  its  Recollections. 

Conrad,  G. :  Das  heilige  Land. 

Aus  den  Briefen  der  osterreicheschen  Pilger  nach  Pal.  Bote 
f.  Tirol,  1856. 

Poole,  II.  :  Report  of  a  Journey  in  Pal.  Jour.  Roy.  Geog. 
Soc.  1856. 

Stewart,  R.  W. :  The  Tent  and  the  Khan. 

Tobler,  T. :  Neue  Forschungen  in  Jerusalem.  In  Petermann’s 
Mittheil.  1857. 

Hoffman’s  Gang  durch  Jeru.  Rev.  in  Ausland,  1856,  No.  43. 
Guerin,  V. :  Description  des  mines  d’Ascelon.  Bullet,  de  la 
Soc.  de  Geoo*.  1857. 


Poole,  II. :  On  the  Determination  of  the  Shores  of  the  Dead 
Sea.  Proceed.  Roy.  Geog.  Soc.  1857. 

Marktscenen  in  Damascus.  Ausland,  1857,  No.  35. 



Asneung,  X. :  On  the  Druses  of  Mt.  Lebanon.  Athenaeum, 
Apr.  25,  1857. 

Van  Dale,  J.  II.  :  Beknopte  aardrijkskunde  von  Palestina. 
Van  Osterzee,  H.  M.  C. :  Karte  Schets  der  bijbelsch-aardrijks- 

Van  de  Velde,  C.  W.  M. :  Le  Pays  d’ Israel. 

Wylie,  J.  A. :  Ruins  of  Bible  Lands. 

«/  ' 

Georgi,  Otto  :  Die  lieiligen  Statten  der  Christenheit. 

Stanley :  Sin.  and  Pal.  Reviewed  in  Nouv.  Annal.  de  Voy.  1857. 
Roth,  J.  B. :  Reise  von  Jerusalem  und  dem  Todten  Meer  durch 
die  Araba.  In  Petermann,  Mittheil.  1857. 

Prime,  W.  C. :  Tent  Life  in  the  Holy  Land. 

Bassi,  Aless. :  Pellegrimaggio  storico  di  Terrasanta. 

Passueilo,  Ant.  :  Viaggio  a  Gerusalemme. 

Clements,  II.  G.  J. :  Reminiscences  of  Pilgrimage. 

Strigl,  J. :  Getreue  und  umstandliche  Beschreib.  der  Zweit. 
Pilgerfahrt,  etc. 

Petersen,  Th.  E. :  Et  Besag  i  Jerusalem  oo;  Omem. 

Wolff,  P.  :  Jerusalem  (an  illustrated  work). 

Salzmann,  A. :  Jerusalem  (a  collection  of  photographs  taken 
in  the  Ploly  Land). 

Petermann,  A. :  Die  Meereshohe  des  Wady  el  Arabah.  Pet. 
Mittheil.  1857. 

Bonar,  II. :  The  Desert  of  Sinai. 

Hamilton,  James  :  Sinai,  the  Hedjaz  and  Soudan,  etc. 

Lottin  de  Laval:  Voy.  dans  la  Peninsule  Arabique  du  Sinai, 
etc.  Noticed  also  in  Zeitschr.  d.  allg.  Erdkunde,  1857. 

De  Belgiojoso :  Asie  Mineure  et  la  Syria. 

Malan,  S.  C. :  The  Coasts  of  Tyre  and  Sidon. 

Graham,  Cyril  C.  :  His  discoveries  noticed  in  Petermann’s 
Mittheil.  1858. 

Wetzstein:  Ueber  die  Wiisten  Staate  im  Hauran.  In  Zeitsch. 
d.  allge.  Erdk.  1858. 

De  Caumont :  Voyaige  d’oultremer  en  Jherusalem,  etc. 
Bodemann,  F.  W. :  Das  heil.  Land. 

Garbs,  F.  A.  :  Land  und  Volk  des  alten  Bun  des. 

Bonar,  II.  :  The  Land  of  Promise. 

Sacred  Places :  A  Series  of  Ten  Views. 

Toblers  Wanderun«;en.  Noticed  in  Petermann’s  Mittheil.  1858. 
Hatala,  P. :  Vezerlapok  a  szent  foldre. 



Hovanyi :  Nehany  Het  a  szent  foldon. 

Valentiner,  F. :  Beitrag  zur  Topogr.  cles  Stammes. 

Benjamin :  Z.  d.  dentsch.  morgenland.  Gesell.  1858. 

Barclay,  J.  T.  :  The  City  of  the  Great  King. 

Both,  J.  B. :  Beise  nacli  Palastina.  In  Petermann’sMitt.  1858 
and  1859.  Same  vols.  contain  other  collateral  articles. 
Porpliirig,  A.:  Das  Christliche  Morgenland.  ZEgypten  und  Sinai. 
Marsh,  G.  P. :  Briefliche  Bemerkungen  liber  Petra.  Z.  der 
dentsch.  Morgenland.  Ges.  1858. 

Murray’s  Handbook  for  Syria  and  Palestine. 

Fearley,  J.  L. :  Two  Years  in  Syria. 

Kitto,  J. :  Palestine. 

Bussell,  M. :  Palestine. 

Johnson,  S.  B. :  Hadji  in  Syria. 

Azais  et  Domerque,  C.  :  Journal  d’un  Voy.  en  Orient. 

On  a  new  Survey  of  Palestine.  Petermann  Mitt.  1858. 

Loth’s  Travels,  etc.  P.  Mittheil.  1857  and  1858  ;  Zeits.  d.  all. 
Erd.  1858. 

The  Biver  Jordan,  pictorial  and  descriptive. 

Bosen,  G.  :  Ueber  das  Thai,  etc.  Hebrons.  Z.  d.  deutsch. 
morgenl.  Ges.  1858. 

Graham,  C.  C. :  Explorations  in  the  Desert  east  of  the 
Hauran.  Pro.  of  Boy.  Geog.  Soc.  1858. 

Bitter,  C. :  Zwei  Entdeckungsreisen  durch  Wetzstein  und 
Graham.  Z.  f.  allg.  Erdk.  1858  ;  Monatsber.  d.  k.  Preuss. 
Akad.  d.  Wissen.  1858. 

Guys,  Ch.  :  Considerations  sur  les  Maronites  et  sur  les  Druses. 
Bev.  de  1’ Orient,  1858. 

Graham,  C.  C. :  The  Ancient  Bashan  and  the  Cities  of  Og. 
Cambridge  Essays,  1858. 

Graham’s  Discoveries  noticed  in  Z.  f.  allg.  Erdkunde,  1858. 
Bitter’s  Beport  on  Wetzstein’s  and  Graham’s  Explorations. 

Trans,  and  pub.  in  New  York  Observer,  May  1859. 

Bridges,  G.  W. :  Palestine  as  it  is.  Photographic  views. 
Thompson,  W.  M. :  The  Land  and  the  Book. 

Soffr,  F. :  Palmstina  neb  Zeme  swata. 

Osburn,  H.  S.  :  Palestine,  Past  and  Present. 

Present  Condition  of  Palestine,  discussed  in  Ausland  1859, 
No.  10. 

Lorenzen,  F.  B. :  J erusalem. 



Mayer,  Ph. :  Erinnerungen  aus  Jerusalem  unci  Palastina. 

Altmuller,  H.  W. :  Jerusalem  uacli  seinem  ortliclien  Lage. 

Graham’s  Explorations.  Jour.  Roy.  Geog.  Soc.  1858. 

Rey,  E.  G. :  Une  Visite  aux  Ruines  de  Kannaouat,  dans  le 
Hauran.  Nouv.  Annal.  de  Voy.  1859. 

Wetzstein,  J.  G. :  Reise  in  den  beiden  Trachonen  und  um  das 
Hauran  Gebirge.  Z.  d.  alio;.  Erd.  1859. 

Wetzstein,  J.  G. :  Mittheilungen  liber  Hauran  und  die 
Trachonen.  Same  journal  and  same  date. 

Tobler,  T. :  Dritte  Wanderung  nach  Palastina. 

Birdcatching  in  Palestine.  Chambers’  Journ.  1859. 

Sallmann,  E. :  Wandkarte  des  heil.  Landes. 

Nablus  und  die  Samariter,  Grenzboten  1860. 

Guys,  H. :  Beyrout  et  el  Liban. 

Guys,  H. :  V oyage  en  Syrie. 

Documents  sur  la  Religion  des  Druses.  Rev.  Orient,  et  Americ. 

Geog.  and  Geol.  of  the  Eastern  Districts  of  Syria.  Ed.  New 
Phil.  Journ.  1860. 

Rey,  E.  G. :  Voyage  dans  le  Haouran. 

Wetzstein,  J.  G. :  Reiseberichte  liber  Hauran. 

Von  Raumer,  Palastina. 

De  Zwart,  A.  C. :  Handleiding  bij  de  aardrijkskunde  von 

Granluud,  V.  G. :  Palaestina. 

Unruh,  G. :  Der  Zug  der  Israeliten. 

Cubley,  L.  M. :  The  Hills  and  Plains  of  Palestine. 

Bourasse,  J.  J. :  La  Terre  Sainte. 

Isambert,  E. :  Une  Visite  au  Temple  de  Jerusalem.  Bull,  de 
la  Soc.  de  Geog.  1860. 

Dornis,  A.  W.  C. :  Geschiedkundige  geograf.  statisticke  schets 
outrent  het  Syrische  rik,  etc. 

Ponjade,  E. :  Le  Liban  et  la  Syrie. 

Dubois,  Th. :  Des  populations  du  Liban,  et  principalement  des 
Druses.  In  Rev.  Germanicpie,  I860.' 

Urquhart,  D. :  The  Lebanon.  Reviewed  in  Athenaeum,  1860. 

Cowper,  B.  PI. :  Sects  in  Syria. 

Die  Maroniten.  In  Ausland,  1860,  No.  37. 

Carnarvon  :  Recollections  of  the  Druses  of  the  Lebanon.  Re¬ 
viewed  in  Athenaeum,  1860. 



Documents  sur  la  theologie  cles  Druses.  In  Rev.  Orientale  et 
Americaine,  1860. 

Nachricht  liber  die  Reise  des  Consul  Wetzstein’s  von  Damascus 
nach  Kal.  Z.  f.  allg.  Erd.  1860. 

Der  Hauran,  etc.  In  Ausland,  1860,  No.  48. 

Hogg,  J. :  On  Jebel  Hauran.  In  Rep.  of  Brit.  Ass.  for  tbe 
Ad.  of  Science,  1859. 

The  Druses  of  the  Hauran.  In  Colburn’s  New  Monthly  Mag. 

Von  Kremer:  liber  Damascus,  etc.  In  Ausland,  1860,  No.  31. 

Ein  Ausflug  von  Damascus  nacli  Sekka  und  Gassub.  Z.  f. 
allg.  Erdk.  1860. 

Rellew,  J.  C.  M. :  Over  the  Lebanon  to  Baalbek.  In  Tern.  Bar, 

Description  de  Baalbek.  In  Nouv.  Annal.  de  Voy.  1860. 

Kitto,  J. :  Phys.  Geog.  of  the  Holy  Land. 

Granlund,  V.  G. :  Palsestina. 

Kuthner,  A. :  Geografie  von  Paliistina. 

Analysis  of  the  Geog.  of  Palestine. 

Ludolf  von  Suchen  :  Reisebuch  ins  heil.  Land. 

Gondek,  F. :  Wspomnienia  z.  Pielgrznki  d.  Ziemi  Svvetey, 
odbytej  w.  1859,  roku. 

Scherer,  II. :  Eine  Oster  Reise  ins  heilige  Land. 

Fliedner,  T. :  Reizen  in  bet  heil.  Land. 

Voyages  en  Palestine.  In  Le  Tour  du  Monde,  1860. 

Messmer,  J. :  Das  heil.  Land. 

Tobler’s  Dritte  Wan  derung.  Reviewed  in  Ausland,  1860,  No. 
49  ;  and  in  Nouv.  Annal.  de  Voyages,  1860. 

De  Bertou :  Le  mont  Iior,  le  Tombeau  d’ Aaron,  etc. 

Kent,  Ch. :  Bethlehem,  Jerusalem,  Golgotha.  In  Colburn’s 
New  Monthly,  1860. 

Tlirete,  H. :  Jerusalem,  seine  Lage,  etc. 

Rosen,  G. :  Topographisches  aus  Jerusalem.  Z.  d.  deutsch. 
morgen.  Gesell.  1860. 

The  same:  Ueber  Nablus  und  Umgegend.  Same  journal, 
same  year. 

Der  Stand  der  Dinge  zu  Jerusalem.  In  Ausland,  1860,  No.  31. 

Du  Couret,  L. :  Life  in  the  Desert. 

Heyd :  Die  italienischen  Handelscolonien  in  Paliistina.  In  Z. 
f.  d.  ges.  Staatswissenschaft. 



Aucapitaine,  H. :  Notes  cle  Voyage.  In  Nouv.  Annal.  d.  Voy. 

Screiben  von  Skene :  Ueber  die  arab.  Beduinen  in  Syrien.  In 
Ausland,  1861,  No.  15. 

Die  Drusen  nach  Bericliten  eines  Drnsen.  Grenzboten 

Bourquenond,  A. :  Memoire  sur  les  mines  de  Seleucie. 

Spall,  A. :  Souvenirs  d’un  voyage  au  Liban.  In  Le  Tour  du 

IVetzstein’s  Journey  into  Trachonitis  and  the  Hauran.  In  New 
York  Observer,  1861,  No.  1969. 

Doemens,  B. :  Wetzsteins  und  Doemens  Keise.  In  Z.  f.  alio;. 
Erdk.  1860. 

Bey,  G. :  Voyage  dans  le  Haouran.  Beviewed  in  Nouv.  Annal. 
d.  Voy.  1861. 

Meen,  J.  A. :  Histor.  and  Descrip.  Geog.  of  Palestine. 

Tobler,  T. :  Das  heil.  Land,  etc.  In  Ausland,  1861,  No.  1. 
The  same :  Die  Omar  Moschee  in  Jerusalem.  Same  journal, 

No.  14. 

Benan,  E. :  Mission  scientifique  en  Orient.  In  Nouv.  Annal.  d. 
Voy.  1861. 

Desjardins,  E. :  La  Phenicie  orientale,  et  Occident.  In  Bev. 
Orient,  et  Americ.  1860. 

Poulain  de  Bossay :  Becherches  sur  la  Topog.  de  Tyr.  In 
Bullet,  de  la  Soc.  de  Geog.  1861. 

Aucapitaine,  II.:  Notes  sur  le  Belad  Haouran.  In  Nouv. 
Annal.  de  Voy.  1861. 

Doergens,  B.:  Astronomische  Ortsbestimmungen  und  baro- 
metrische  Ilbhemessengen  in  Syrien  und  Palastina.  In  Z. 
f.  allg.  Erdk.  1861. 

Harvey,  Mrs:  Our  Cruise  in  the  u  Claymore.” 

A  Visit  to  the  Cedars  of  Lebanon.  In  Naut.  Mag.  1861. 
Beaufort,  E.  A.:  Egyptian  Sepulchres  and  Syrian  Shrines. 
See  also  Athenaeum,  1861. 

Wetzstein:  Lebensbilder  aus  der  Beduinen  und  Drusen  welt. 
In  Ausland,  1861,  No.  30. 

De  Bossay,  Poulain  :  Becherches  sur  la  Topog.  de  Tyr. 

Mongel  Bey :  Port  de  Said. 

Verzeichniss  einer  Sammlung  von  Beisen  ins  heil.  Land.  In 
Petzhold,  N.  Anzeiger  fur  Bibliographic,  1861. 



Strauss,  F.  A.  und  Otto  :  Die  Lander  und  Stiitten  der  Heiligen- 

Tobler,  T. :  Analecten  aus  Palastina.  In  Ausland,  1861,  No.  37. 
Zimmermann,  C.:  Geog.  Analyse  zu  dem  Yersuch  einer  Con¬ 
struction  der  Karte  von  Galilaa. 

Ein  Run d gang  um  Jerusalem.  In  Ausland,  1861,  No.  32. 
Steudner:  Die  deutsche  Expedition  bei  den  Moses  Quellen. 

In  Petermann’s  Mittbeil.  1861. 

Churchill :  Mount  Lebanon. 

Churchill:  The  Druses  and  the  Maronites. 

Aucapitaine,  BL:  Etude  sur  les  Druses.  In  Nouv.  Annal.  de 
Yoy.  1862. 

Renan,  E.:  Mission  archeologique  de  Phenicie.  In  l’Institut 
Sciences  hist.  1862. 

Mission  de  Phenicie.  Rev.  archeol.  1862. 

Poulain  de  Bossay :  Observations  sur  l’un  des  rapports  de  M. 

Renan.  In  Bullet,  de  la  Soc.  de  Geoo;.  1862. 

Beke,  Ch.:  Harran  of  the  Columns.  In  Athenaeum,  1861,  No. 


Ainsworth,  W.  F. :  Haran  of  the  Bible.  In  same  journal,  No. 


Porter,  J.  L.:  Site  of  Haran.  Same,  No.  1780. 

Beke,  Ch.:  Jacob’s  Route  from  Harran.  Same  journal,  No. 

Beke,  Ch.:  Harran  of  the  Bible.  Same  journal,  No.  1792. 
Jukes,  J.  B.:  Harran  of  the  Bible.  Same  journal,  No.  1796. 
Tischendorf,  C.:  Aus  dem  heil.  Lande. 

Sepp  :  Jerusalem  und  das  heil.  Land. 

Yon  Noroff,  A.:  Meine  Reise  nach  Palastina. 

Travels  in  the  Holy  Land.  Colburn’s  New  Monthly,  1862. 
Unruh,  G.:  Das  alte  Jerusalem. 

Besuch  einiger  alten  Todesstatten.  In  Ausland,  1862,  No.  22. 
Ceremonies  de  la  Semaine  sainte  a  Jerusalem.  In  Le  Tour  du 
Monde,  1862,  No.  119. 

Ein  Besuch  des  Judenquartiers  zu  Jerusalem.  Ausland,  1862, 

No.  1. 

Die  Juden  Jerusalem.  In  Ausland,  1862,  No.  19. 

Zwei  Ausfllige  in  die  nahere  Landschaft  bei  Jerusalem.  Same 
journal,  1862,  No.  17. 

Yon  Raumer,  K.:  Bemerkungen  bezuglich  der  neuen  Reise,  etc. 



Reise  van  de  Yeldes  nach  der  Sinit.  Halbinsel.  Petermann’s 
Mittheil.  1862. 

Edwards,  R.:  La  Syrie,  1840  to  1862. 

Desmoulins  :  Renseignments  hydrographiques  et  statistiques  sur 
la  Cote  de  Syrie. 

Guys,  H.:  Esquisse  de  l’etat  politique  et  commercial  de  la  Syrie. 
Louet,  E.:  Expedition  de  Syrie. 

Wetzstein:  Ueber  die  Reisen  des  frans.  Waddinston  in  Syrien. 
In  Z.  f.  allg.  Erdk.  1862. 

Beke,  Ch.  T.:  Excursion  to  Harran  in  Padan-Aram.  In  Pro¬ 
ceed.  of  Roy.  Geog.  Soc.  1862. 

Beke  and  Porter  :  Site  of  Haran.  In  Athenaeum,  1862,  No. 

Ten  Days  on  Mount  Lebanon.  In  Tern.  Bar,  1862. 

Hooker,  J.  D.:  The  Cedars  of  Lebanon.  In  Athenaeum,  1862, 
No.  1830. 

Wilkinson  :  same  subject.  Athenaeum,  No.  1829;  and  Ausland, 
1862,  No.  51. 

Redslob,  G.  M. :  Ueber  die  Namen  Damask  und  Damast.  Z. 

d.  deutsch.  morgen.  Gesell.  1862. 

Damascus.  In  Ausland,  1862,  No.  23. 

Bovet,  F.:  Reis  door  het  heil.  Land. 

Gerdes,  E.:  Naar  Jeruzalem  en  het  heil.  Land. 

Garbs:  Land  und  Yolk  des  alten  Bundes. 

Isaacs,  Ab.:  A  Pictorial  Tour  in  the  Holy  Land. 

Tobler,  T.:  Analekten  aus  Palastina.  In  Ausland,  1862,  Nos. 
26  and  52. 

Mansell,  A.  L. :  Coast  Survey  of  Palestine.  In  Naut.  Mag 

Bartlett,  W.  II. :  Jerusalem  Revisited. 

Souvenirs  de  Jerusalem. 

Jerusalem.  In  Ausland,  1862,  No.  45. 

Ceremonies  de  la  Semaine  sainte  a  Jerusalem.  In  Le  Tour  de 
Monde,  1862,  No.  119. 

Ein  Osterfest  in  Jerusalem.  In  Gelzer’s  Protest.  Monatsblatter, 
vol.  xix. 

Grove,  G.:  Nabloos  and  the  Samaritans.  In  Yacat.  Tourists, 

Prout,  T.  J.:  Ascent  of  Um  Shaumur.  In  Proceed,  of  Roy. 
Geog.  Soc.  1862. 

VOL.  II. 




Forster,  Ch.:  Sinai  Photographed. 

Tischendorff’s  Third  Journey  reviewed  in  Ausland,  1862,  No.  33. 
Der  Berg  Sinai  und  sein  Kloster.  Europa,  1862,  No.  35. 
Lockroy,  E.:  Voyage  en  Syrie.  In  Le  Tour  de  Monde,  1863. 
Henan’s  work  on  Phoenicia,  reviewed  in  Z.  f.  allg.  Erdk.  1863. 
Note  on  the  Phoenician  ruins  of  Amrit.  Same  journal. 
Communication  de  M.  le  Comte  de  Vogues.  In  Rev.  archeol. 

Die  geographisch.  Lage  von  Damascus.  In  Petermann’s 
Mittheil.  1863. 

Macgowan,  D.  J. :  The  u  Keswick  River  ”  an  Aqueduct.  In 
Jour.  Roy.  Geog.  Soc.  1862. 

Die  Secten  in  Syrien.  In  Ausland,  1863,  No.  40. 

Stahelin  :  Localitat  der  Kriege  Davids.  Z.  d.  deutsch.  mor- 
genl.  Ges.  1863. 

Wortabet,  J.:  The  Hermon.  In  Jour.  Roy.  Geog.  Soc.  1862. 
Beke,  Ch.  T.:  Notes  on  the  Excursion  to  Harran.  In  Jour. 
Roy.  Geog.  Soc.  1862. 

Mansell,  A.  L.:  Surveying  Trip  through  the  Holy  Land.  In 
Naut.  Mag.  1863. 

Richardt,  Ch.:  Dagbogsblade  fra  det  Hellige  Land  i  paasken 
1862.  In  Nordisk.  Universetels  Zidscrift.  1863. 

Gerdes,  E.:  Naar  Jeruzalem  en  het  heil.  Land. 

Busch,  M. :  Eine  Wallfahrt  nach  Jerusalem. 

Tobler,  T.:  Analekten  aus  Palas.  In  Ausland,  1863,  Nos.  13,  38. 
From  Jaffa  to  Jerusalem.  In  Dub.  Univer.  Rev.  1863. 

Reise  von  Klein  nach  Gaza.  In  Ausland,  1863,  No.  31. 

Die  Osterwoclie  in  Jerusalem.  Globus,  1863. 

De  Saulcy,  F. :  Deux  Villes  Beth-sayda  et  Capharnaoum.  In 
Rev.  archeol.  1863. 

Die  Colonie  Artas  bei  Bethlehem.  In  Ausland,  1863,  No.  9. 
Rosen,  G. :  Die  Patriarchengruft  zu  Hebron.  In  Z.  f.  allg. 
Erdk.  1863. 

Topograpliisches  aus  Nazareth.  In  Ausland,  1863,  No.  42. 
Ackerbau  der  Franciscaner  in  Galilaa.  Same,  No.  10. 

Reise  des  Herrn  Zeller  von  Nazareth  in  den  Hauran.  Same, 
No.  41. 

Smith,  S.:  What  I  saw  in  Syria,  etc. 

Maunoir,  C.:  Sur  l’exploration  historique,  etc.,  par  M.  de 
Saulcy.  Bull,  de  la  Soc.  de  la  Geog.  1864. 



Rambles  in  the  Deserts  of  Syria. 

Ausflug  von  Beyrout.  In  Ausland,  1864,  No.  18. 

Guys,  H.:  La  Nation  Druse,  son  histoire,  etc. 

Beyrout.  In  Ausland,  1864,  No.  3. 

Sprenger,  A.:  Geographisches  der  Norm  Baal  in  Syrien.  In 
Z.  der  deutsch.  inorgenl.  Ges.  1864. 

Baur,  C.:  Palastina. 

Volter,  L.:  Das  lieil.  Land,  etc. 

Pelgrimsreise  naar  het  lieil.  Land. 

Tucli :  Ueber  den  Ursprung  des  todten  Meers.  In  Ber.  iiber 
d.  Verhdl.  d.  K.  Sachs  Ges.  d.  Wiss.  1863. 

News  from  the  Holy  Land.  In  Athenaeum,  Nos.*  1901,  1904. 

,  Sandi,  G.  :  Horeb  und  Jerusalem. 

Pierotti,  E. :  Jerusalem  Explored. 

Chronologische  Zusammenstellung  der  Baudenkmaler  Jerusa¬ 
lems.  In  Ausland,  1864,  No.  2. 

De  Vogues  :  Le  Temple  de  Jerusalem. 

Eine  Neue  Entdeckung  in  den  Konigsgraben  Jerusalem.  In 
Ausland,  1864,  No.  7. 

Zur  Emmaus  Frage.  Same  journ.  1864,  No.  19. 

Eaton,  F.  A. :  A  Journey  from  Nazareth  to  Bozrah.  In  Pro¬ 
ceed.  of  the  Roy.  Geog.  Soc.  1864. 

Noldeke  T. :  Ueber  die  Amalekiter  und  einme  andere  Nach- 


barvblker  der  Israeliten. 

Tischendorf’s  Journey,  reviewed  in  Globus,  1864. 

Bida  et  G.  Ilochette  :  Excursion  au  Mount  Sinai.  In  Le  Tour, 
du  Monde,  No.  209. 

Bewemmo;  des  svrischen  Handels  in  1863.  In  Austria,  1864. 

Ausflug  von  Beyrut  nach  der  Via  Antoniniana.  In  Ausland, 
1864,  No.  28. 

Rambles  in  the  Des.  of  Syria.  Reviewed  in  No.  Brit.  Rev.  1864. 

Ein  Besuch  bei  Daud  Pascha.  In  Ausland,  1864. 

Cortambert,  R. :  Aventures  d’un  artiste  dans  le  Liban. 

Gaillardot,  C.  :  Relation  de  la  Campagne  des  Egyptiens  dans 
le  Hauran.  In  Nouv.  Annal.  d.  Yoy.  1864. 

Voyage  de  Jerusalem  et  autres  lieux  by  Rosel,  decrit  en  1664. 

Mission  scientifique  de  M.  Victor  Guerin  en  Palestine.  In 
Nouv.  Annal.  de  Voy.  1864. 

Palestine  and  its  Population.  In  Church  Missionary  Intelli¬ 
gencer,  1864. 



Rosen,  G. :  Zur  Geog.  Palsestinas.  In  Z.  cl.  allg.  Erdk.  18G4. 
Ilohebestimmungen  einiger  Piinkte  Palaestinas.  Same  journal, 

News  from  the  Holy  Land.  Athenaeum,  1864,  No.  1911. 
Rosen,  G. :  Das  palastinische  Felsengrab.  In  Z.  f.  allg.  Erdk. 

Zwei  alte  arabisehe  Schriftsteller  iiber  Jerusalem.  In  Ausland, 

Roux,  B. :  Analyse  de  Feau  de  la  Mer  Morte.  In  Archives  de 
medecine  navale,  1864. 

De  Vogues  :  Ruines  d’Araq-el-Emir.  In  Rev.  Archeol.  1864. 
Clowes,  G. :  The  Western  Shore  of  the  Dead  Sea.  In  Proceed 
of  Roy.  Geog.  Soc.  1864. 

Blaine  and  Greenwood  :  East  of  the  Jordan.  In  Athenaeum, 

1864,  Nos.  1913  and  1917. 

De  Damas  :  En  Orient,  Vo y.  au  Sinai. 

Mordtmann,  A.  D. :  Gerstdorf  s  Reise  in  Syrien.  In  Peter- 
mann’s  Mittlieil.  1865. 

Die  Umgebungen  von  Damascus.  In  Ausland,  1865,  No.  42. 
Schick,  C. :  Von  Banias  nach  Damascus.  In  Ausland,  1865, 
No.  43. 

Von  Beyrut  nach  Damascus.  Ibid.  No.  34. 


Rey,  E.  G. :  Sur  son  Exploration  de  la  montagne  des  Ansaries 
en  Syrie.  In  Bull,  de  la  Soc.  de  Geog.  1865. 

Physical  Geog.  in  the  Holy  Land.  Colburn’s  New  Monthly, 


Meen,  J.  A.  :  Geography  of  Palestine. 

Robinson,  Edward  :  Pliys.  Geog.  of  the  Holy  Land. 

Pierotti,  E. :  La  Palestine  actuelle. 

Hergt,  C. :  Palsestina. 

Dixon,  W.  II. :  The  Holy  Land. 

Tobler,  T.:  Analekten  aus  Palastina.  In  Ausland,  1865,  No.  19. 
Pilgerfahrt  eines  Augsburgers.  Ibid.  No.  35. 

Vier  alte  Pilgerschaften.  Ibid.  No.  4. 

Cassini,  F. :  Un  Viaggio  in  Terra  Santa. 

Riant,  P. :  Expedition  et  pelerinages  des  Scandinaves  en  Terre 

Tristam,  II.  B. :  The  Land  of  Israel. 

Note  sur  le  voyage  de  M.  le  due  d.  Lynes.  In  Bull,  de  la  Soc. 
de  Geog.  1864. 


Neuere  wissenschaftliche  Reisen  von  Mansell  unci  Luynes.  In 
Ausland,  1865,  No.  14. 

Furrer,  K. :  Wanderungen  durcli  Palastina. 

De  Saulcy,  F. :  Voyage  en  Terre  Sainte. 

Recent  Travels  in  the  Holy  Land.  In  Colburn’s  New  Monthly 
Mag.  1805. 

Van  der  Velde’s  letzte  Reise.  In  Petermann’s  Mitth.  1865. 

Discours  de  Van  de  Velde  sur  la  Palestine.  In  Rapport  du 
Pres,  de  la  Soc.  de  Geog.  de  Geneve. 

De  Pressense,  E. :  The  Land  of  the  Gospel.  The  same  in 
French  (original). 

Schlegel,  Th. :  Reise  nach  dem  lieil.  Lande. 

Robertson  and  Beato  :  J erusalem  Album  Pliotographique. 

Schick,  C. :  Die  Gewolbe  unter  dem  Gerichtshausen  Jerusa¬ 
lem.  In  Ausland,  1865,  No.  37. 

Schick,  C. :  Die  Zionsquelle  zu  Jerusalem.  Ibid.  No.  38. 

Bertrand,  A. :  Les  Ruines  d’Araq-el-Emir.  In  Rev.  archeol. 

Guerin,  V. :  Le  mont  Thabor,  etc.  In  Bull,  de  la  Soc.  de 
Geog.  1865. 

Vignes,  L. :  Extrait  des  Notes  d’un  Voy.  d’Exploration  a  la 
Mer  Morte. 

Lartet’s  XJntersuchungen  des  todten  Meers.  In  Ausland,  1865, 
No.  22. 

IVetzstein,  J.  G. :  Nord  Arabien  unci  der  Syrisch.  Wiiste.  In 
Z.  f.  allg.  Erdk.  1865. 

D’Avril,  A. :  Le  Peninsule  Arabique  depuis  cent  ans.  In  Rev. 
de  Deux  Mondes,  1865. 


Hughes,  E. :  Atlas  of  Bible  Lands. 

Das  heil.  Land  aus  der  Vogelschau. 

Handtke,  F.:  Wandkarte  von  Palestina. 

Barklay,  J.  T.:  Map  of  Jerusalem. 

Jung,  G.:  Atlas  zur  Geschichte  des  Alten  Bundes. 

Lionnet,  A.:  Bibel  Atlas. 

Van  Senclen:  Bijbel  Atlas. 

Van  cler  Velde,  C.  W.  M. :  Map  of  the  Holy  Land,  with  Memoir. 
Van  der  Velde,  C.  W.  M.:  Plan  of  Jerusalem. 



White,  A.  T.:  Tabular  Views  of  the  Geog.  and  Soc.  Hist,  of 

De  Bruyer,  M.  D.:  Ueber  die  Cartographie  von  Palastina. 
Leonhard,  P.  M.:  Skolekart  von  Palestina. 

Bey,  G. :  Examen  de  quelque  parties  de  la  Carte  de  la  Pal.  de 
Van  der  Velde.  Bull,  de  Soc.  de  Geog.  1859. 

Altmuller,  II.  W.:  Belief  plan  von  Jerusalem. 


AND  THE  CLOSE  OF  1865. 

De  Bruyer,  M.  D.:  Palastina  ex  veteris  sevi  monumentis  ac 
recentiorum  observationibus  illustrata. 

Hughes,  E. :  A  School  Atlas  of  Bible  Lands. 

Handtke,  F.:  Wandkarte  von  Palastina. 

Scheidel,  J.:  Maps  of  Palestine. 

Carte  de  Palestine  portagee  en  12  tribus. 

Eltzner,  A.:  Das  biblisclie  Jerusalem. 

Hornung,  D. :  Biblisclie  Geschichts  Karte. 

Beiling:  Karte  von  Palestina. 

Bayne:  Panoramic  View  of  Palestine. 

Garbs,  F.  A.:  Special  Karte  von  Palestina. 

Beeive,  F.:  Wandkarte  von  Palastina. 

Holy  Land.  A  Series  of  Views. 

Audriveau,  J. :  Carte  de  la  Palestine. 

Porter,  J.  L.:  Memoir  on  the  Map  of  Damascus,  Hauran,  and 
the  Lebanon.  Jour.  Boy.  Geog.  Soc.  1856. 

Kiepert,  H.:  Karte  von  Palastina  fur  Schulen. 

Kiepert,  H. :  Wandkarte  von  Palastina. 

Beck,  E.:  Belief  von  Palastina. 

Audriveau,  J. :  Palestine  ancienne  et  modern e. 

Sallmann,  E.:  Wandkarte  des  heil.  Landes. 

Kiepert,  H.:  Carte  de  la  Syrie  Meridionale,  comprenant  les 
montagnes  du  Liban,  etc. 

Kaart  von  Syrie  en  aangrenzende  landen. 

Van  de  Velde:  The  Lebanon. 

Plan  von  Palastina  und  der  See  Genezareth. 

Mediterranean,  Syrian  Coast,  Saida,  1860.  Issued  by  Hydrogr. 

Office.  The  same,  1861,  Syria,  Buad  Anchorage. 

Tripoli  Boadstead,  and  Iskanderun  to  Markhab. 


Berghaus,  II.:  Karte  von  Palestine. 

Scone,  S.  H.:  Typographische  Kaart  von  Palestina. 

Garbs:  Karte  der  biblischen  Lander. 

Winckelmann,  E.:  Wandkarte  von  Palestina. 

Carte  du  Liban,  etc.,  dresse  au  Depot  de  la  Guerre,  etc.  Comp. 
Bullet,  de  la  Soc.  de  Geog.  1862. 


Hergt,  C.:  Wandkarte  von  Palaestina. 

Publications  du  Depot  de  la  Marine.  No.  1971,  Cote  de  Syrie; 
Plan  du  mouillage  de  Sour.  No.  1977,  Plan,  etc.  de  Tripoli. 
No.  1980,  Plan,  etc.  de  Saida.  No.  1973,  Carte  de  la  Cote 
de  Syrie,  entre  Ruad  et  Carmel.  No.  1976,  Plan,  etc.  de 

Kiepert:  Karte  von  Palasstina. 

Riess,  Rc:  Die  Lander  der  lieil.  Schrift. 

Syria  and  Jerusalem.  Hydrographic  Office  Map. 

Plan  de  Jerusalem,  hebraique  et  chretienne. 

Syria,  Ras  en  Nakura  to  el-Arish.  Hydrographic  Office  series. 
Van  der  Yelde,  C.  W.  M.:  Carte  de  la  Terre  Sainte. 

Carte  des  Pays  explores  par  la  Mission  de  Phenice,  dresse  au 
Depot  de  la  Guerre. 

Maps  in  Tristram’s  Land  of  Israel. 

Maps  in  Thompson’s  Land  and  the  Book. 






ITIIOUT  entering  largely  into  an  investigation  re¬ 
garding  the  universality  of  the  appellations  Aramgea 
and  Syria, — the  question  being  one  eagerly  disputed, 
the  etymologies  involved  being  very  uncertain,1  and 
the  applications  of  the  words  themselves  varying  largely, — yet 
there  are  certain  explanations  to  be  made  regarding  the  ancient 
names  of  places  and  people  used  in  the  country  which  now 
bears  the  name  Palestine.  For  those  names  are  in  themselves 
historical  documents  of  great  value  in  acquiring  a  knowledge  of 
the  land  and  its  inhabitants;  and  they  cannot  be  passed  over  with 
neglect  in  this  course  of  study,  whether  looked  at  from  the  point 
of  view  which  I  assume,  or  with  reference  to  the  facts  which  are 
drawn  from  a  study  of  them.  Although  the  name  Shur,  as  the 
designation  of  a  definite  desert  territory  in  the  Sinai  Peninsula, 
was  brought  to  our  knowledge  particularly  in  connection  with 
the  transit  of  the  children  of  Israel  through  it  (Ex.  xv.  22), 
and  although  Shur  (giving  rise  to  Shurians,  Surians,  or  Syrians, 
who  trace  their  descent  through  Aram  from  Nahor,  Abraham’s 
brother,  Gen.  xxii.  20-23)  was  the  broader  appellation  given 

1  Hadr.  Relandi  Palxstina ,  l.c.  viii.  43-48  ;  G.  Wahl,  Vorcler  und  Mittel 
Asien ,  1795,  Pt.  i.  pp.  299-327  ;  Mannert,  Geog.  d.  Gr.  und  Rom.  Pt.  vi. 
1,  1799;  Palsestina  und  Syrien ,  pp.  203,  432;  Rosenmiiller,  Syrien  oder 
Aram ,  in  Handbuch  Bib.  Altli.  vol.  i.  232-321 ;  G.  B.  Winer,  Biblischer 
Realm  or  terbuch ,  3d  ed.  1847;  Aram.  i.  pp.  79-81;  Syria ,  ii.  pp.  555-559; 
Assyria ,  i.  pp.  102-108. 



to  the  whole  country  lying  between  the  Euphrates  and  Egypt 
(Gen.  xv.  18),  and  especially  the  eastern  part  of  that  broad 
tract,  the  scene  of  David’s  fierce  battles  (1  Sam.  xxvii.  8), — 
the  name,  apparently,  one  indigenous  in  that  region, — yet  at  a 
later  period  it  was  applied  by  foreigners,  and  especially  by  the 
Seleucidse,  the  Greeks,  Romans,  Saracens,  and  Turks,  to  the 
country  farther  north,  and  under  the  form  of  2 vpla ,  Syria, 
Suristan,  Coele-Syria,  came  into  general  usage.  The  name 
Aramsea,  on  the  contrary,  as  a  mere  genealogical  appellative, 
applied  to  the  same  territory,  derived  from  Aram,  a  son  of 
Shem,  and  always  used  in  connection  with  people  of  Semitic 
stock,  is  altogether  less  prominently  brought  forward,  and  never 
was  adopted  by  foreigners,  although  Strabo  used  it  once,  and 
although  it  is  not  absolutely  unknown  among  Arabian  authors. 

The  name  Land  of  the  Hebrews,  or  Ebrews,  has  only  come 
into  vogue  since  the  time  of  Josephus  (. Antiq .  Jud.  vii.  9,  6,  etc.), 
although  Heber  or  Eber  is  mentioned  as  one  of  the  descendants 
of  Shem  (Gen.  x.  21),  who  is  spoken  of  as  a  father  of  all  the 
children  of  Eber,  among  whom  are  included  the  sons  of  Joktan 
and  the  sons  of  Abraham.  He  is  spoken  of  (Gen.  xi.  16)  by 
many  in  our  day  as  a  merely  mythical  personage,  like  so  many 
others  who  are  mentioned  in  heathen  records.  It  is  thought 
that  the  etymology  of  the  expression  Land  of  the  Hebrews  indi¬ 
cates  a  country  of  wanderers,1  and  may  indicate  a  time  when  the 
people  were  immigrants  ;  and  such  a  name  could  only  have  been 
given  them  by  the  Canaanites,  and  may  refer  to  their  former 
residence  beyond  the  Euphrates,  the  Mesopotamian  Aram,  the 
Haran  whence  Abraham  came.  Yet  this  view  of  the  origin 
of  the  name  Hebrews  or  Ebrews  is  a  subject  of  dispute ;  and 
Ewald  has  conjectured2  an  ingenious  etymology,  connecting  it 
with  the  Iberians  found  among  the  Caucasus.  One  ground 
of  this  hypothesis  is,  that  the  name  of  Arphaxad,  the  father 
of  Eber,  is  still  connected  with  the  most  northern  province  of 
Assyria,  on  the  southern  frontier  of  Armenia,  and  seems  to 
point  back  to  a  northern  home  of  the  common  stock,  whose 
primitive  name,  dating  from  a  most  remote  antiquity,  was  not 
supplanted  when  the  children  of  Israel  had  conquered  the 
country,  and  changed  the  entire  character  of  the  population. 

1  Rosenmiiller,  i.a.l,  i.  p.  69. 

2  Ewald,  Geschichte  des  Volks  Israel ,  Pt.  i.  1813,  pp.  332-335. 



It  is  a  noteworthy  fact  in  corroboration  of  this,  that  in  the  oldest 
records  the  name  Land  of  the  Ebrews  or  Hebrews  is  very  rare ; 
it  occurs  in  Gen.  xl.  15,  where  Joseph  is  telling  the  story  of 
his  coming  out  of  his  own  country.  The  expression  is  shunned 
in  the  Bible,  even  when  the  primitive  Hebrew  people,  writings, 
and  language  are  spoken  of. 

Of  far  greater  geographical  and  ethnographical  import  is 
the  name  the  Land  and  People  of  Canaan,  which  takes  us  back 
to  the  gloomy  vestibule  of  Palestine  proper  and  its  history,  and 
to  its  condition  before  the  children  of  Israel  became  the  pos¬ 
sessors  of  the  country,  and  while  the  struggle  was  still  going  on 
in  which  the  name  of  Israel  had  even  to  struggle  for  existence. 


If  Aram,  or  Aramsea,  used  in  the  strict  sense  of  the  most 
ancient  period,  was  the  term  employed  to  designate  the  regions 
north  and  east  of  Lebanon,  and  towards  the  Euphrates  and 
Mesopotamia,  the  name  Canaan  or  Cenaan  is  the  one  generally 
employed  to  designate  the  district  farther  south. 

The  country  received  its  name  from  Canaan,  the  fourth 
son  of  Ham  (Gen.  x.  6,  15-19)  ;  and  it  is  mentioned  specifi¬ 
cally  for  the  first  time  in  the  account  of  the  coming  of  Abra¬ 
ham  from  Ur  of  the  Chaldees  first  to  Haran,  and  then  to 
Shecliem  and  Hebron.  Among  the  expressions  used  in  the 
Bible  (Gen.  xi.  31,  xii.  6,  xxiii.  19),  we  find  this  one,  u  And  the 
Canaanite  dwelt  then  in  the  land.”  The  oldest  specification  of 
the  limits  of  the  country  is  that  which  is  given  in  direct  con¬ 
nection  with  the  names  of  the  various  tribes  (Gen.  x.  15—19)  : 
“  And  Canaan  begat  Sidon  his  first-born,  and  Heth,  and  the 
Jebusite,  and  the  Amorite,  and  the  Girgasite,  and  the  Hivite, 
and  the  Arkite,  and  the  Sinite,  and  the  Arvadite,  and  the 
Zemarite,  and  the  Hainathite  :  and  afterward  were  the  families 
of  the  Canaanites  spread  abroad.  And  the  border  of  the 
Canaanites  was  from  Sidon,  as  thou  comest  to  Gerar,  unto 
Gaza ;  as  thou  g'oest  unto  Sodom,  and  Gomorrah,  and  Admah, 
and  Zeboim,  even  unto  Laslia”  (later  Kallirhoe,  on  the  north¬ 
eastern  side  of  the  Dead  Sea).  The  southern  border  indicated 

1  H.  Relandi,  i.  1-8. 



here  is  the  one  which  in  the  former  volume  I  showed  is  the 
one  formed  by  nature  between  Palestine  and  the  deserts  of 
Arabia  Petraea. 

When  the  children  of  Israel  approached  this  country,  and 
were  about  to  divide  it  among  the  tribes,  its  boundaries  were 
more  definitely  laid  down  (Num.  xxxiv.  2-13).  The  corner 
towards  the  south  or  south-east  was  to  begin  at  the  desert  of  Zin 
near  Edom,  and  to  run  along  the  eastern  coast  of  the  Dead  Sea 
up  to  Akrabbim  and  through  Zinna ;  and  the  u  going  forth” 
was  to  be  from  the  south  to  Kadesh-Barnea,  Adar  or  Arad  or 
Addar,  a  place  variously  spelled,  through  Azmon,  and  thence  to 
the  river  of  Egypt,  or  brook  which  ran  into  the  sea  at  el-Arish. 
The  western  border  was  to  be  the  Mediterranean.  The  northern 
frontier  line  ran  from  the  sea  to  Mount  Hor  (not  the  mountain 
of  Aaron  named  in  Num.  xxxiii.  38,  but  Hermon  or  Lebanon), 
thence  to  Hamath  and  Enan  (Enan,  terminus  Damasci : 
Hieron.  Onomcist.),  therefore  in  the  neighbourhood  of  Damas¬ 
cus.  The  line  then  ran  to  Sepham,  to  Biblah  on  the  Orontes, 
the  place  where  king  Jehoahaz  was  taken  captive  by  Pharaoh 
Necho ;  and  then  to  Ain,  between  Lebanon  and  Anti-Lebanon, 
on  the  watershed  between  the  Orontes  and  the  Litani.  Both 
of  these  last  places  have  been  recently  discovered  by  Thomson.1 
From  that  point  the  boundary  ran  along  the  east  side  of  the 
sea  of  Chinnereth,  i.e.  Tiberias,  then  to  the  Jordan,  and  lastly 
to  the  Dead  Sea.  The  Jordan  was  therefore  the  natural 
boundary  of  Canaan  ;  and,  as  Beland  showed,  the  country  to 
the  east  was  not  confounded  with  it.  We  have  a  proof  of  this 
in  Num.  xxxiii.  51,  u  When  ye  are  passed  over  Jordan  into  the 
land  of  Canaan  and  in  the  account  of  the  use  of  the  manna 
as  food  (Ex.  xvi.  35),  u  They  did  eat  manna  until  they  came  unto 
the  borders  of  the  land  of  Canaan.”  See  also  Josh.  v.  12  : 
u  And  the  manna  ceased  on  the  morrow  after  they  had  eaten 
of  the  old  corn  of  the  land  ;  neither  had  the  children  of  Israel 
manna  any  more ;  but  they  did  eat  of  the  fruit  of  the  land  of 
Canaan  that  year.” 

According  to  this  extension  of  the  boundary  of  Canaan  as 
far  as  to  Sidon,  the  territory  of  the  oldest  son  of  Canaan,  the 

1  W.  M.  Thomson,  Letter  on  the  Antiquities  on  the  route  from  Baalbek 
to  Hamath  and  Aleppo,  in  Bib.  Sacra ,  vol.  iv.  1817,  pp.  401,  405,  and 
Note,  p.  408. 



country  of  the  Phoenicians  must  he  embraced  under  the  same 
general  limits ;  and  Chna,  the  Old  Testament  form  of  the 
name  of  Canaan,  was  in  use  among  the  Phoenicians,  whose 
original  founder’s  name  —  Phoinix  (whence  Phoinike  and 
Phoenike) — closely  corresponds  to  the  word  Chanaan,  Chanaina, 
Chananaioi,  Canaanites,  from  Ghana.1 

The  land  and  the  people  bearing  this  double  appellation 
came  therefore,  from  the  very  first,  into  the  closest  mutual  re¬ 
lation,  which  extended  itself  so  far  as  to  influence  the  condition 
of  the  children  of  Israel,  whose  lot  it  was  to  take  possession  of 
one  portion  of  the  country,  to  be  united  by  some  ties  of  alliance 
to  a  part  of  its  inhabitants,  and  to  overthrow  and  annihilate 
another  part. 

The  Phoenicians,  considered  by  Herodotus,  Strabo,  Justinus, 
and  many  other  Greek  and  Roman  writers,  to  be  descended 
from  the  Persians,  and  to  have  entered  the  country  by  the  way 
of  the  Red  Sea,  looked  upon  themselves  as  aboriginal  to  the 
soil,  and  considered  their  gods  the  primitive  deities  of  the  place. 
Their  first  cities  and  their  first  ships  they  claimed  to  have  built 
on  the  shores  of  the  Mediterranean.  Their  most  ancient  history 
did  not  pretend  to  extend  beyond  the  name  Chna  or  Phoenix, 
which  was  attached  to  their  country,  entirely  in  contrast  to  the 
Hebrews,  who  traced  their  lineage  to  the  district  beyond  the 
Euphrates.  This  popular  view  of  the  Phoenicians,  about  which 
historians  have  striven2  from  the  earliest  to  the  present  time, 
and  which  cannot  be  settled  for  want  of  sufficient  evidence, 
harmonized  at  least  with  the  view  of  the  Israelites  reo-ardino; 
the  primitive  inhabitants  of  Canaan.  Movers,  to  whose  ad¬ 
mirable  investigations  in  this  department  we  are  so  much 
indebted,  suggests  as  a  very  important  point,  that  there  is  one 
very  certain  source  of  evidence  in  favour  of  this  view,  namely 
that  traced  in  the  manifest  traditions  of  the  people  of  Canaan  at 
the  time  of  the  Israelitish  conquest,  when  the  story  of  an  ancient 
emigration  to  Canaan,  and  the  consequent  banishment  or  extir¬ 
pation  of  those  taking  part  in  it,  could  not  have  been  extin- 

1  Movers,  Wurdigung  der  Berichte  uber  die  Ilerkunft  der  Plionizier,  in 
Ackterfeld  and  Braun,  Zeitsch.  fur  Philos,  und  Kathol.  Religion ,  N.  S.  1844, 
Jahrg.  v.  p.  7  et  sq. ;  Buttmann,  Mythologies ,  i.  223. 

2  Hengstenberg,  de  Rebus  Tyriorum ,  Berol.  1832  ;  in  opposition  to  Ber- 
tlieau,  Gesch.  der  Israeliten ,  p.  1G3. 



guished,  had  the  effort  failed.  For  the  Mosaic  records,  and  the 
books  of  Joshua,  Samuel,  and  Judges,  which  occasionally  touch 
upon  this  view,  date  from  a  period  when  a  great  portion  of  the 
population  of  Canaan  lived  in  such  close  contact  with  the 
Israelites,  that  the  history  of  the  country  prior  to  its  capture 
must  have  been  freely  imparted  to  them.  According  to  these 
authorities,  the  Canaanites  west  of  the  Jordan  constituted  a 
single  nation,  occupying  the  country  from  the  time  of  the 
flood,  and  broken  up  into  various  tribes,  whose  primitive  ancestor, 
a  descendant  of  Noah,  took  possession  of  the  country  with  his 
sons,  of  whom  Sidcn  was  the  oldest.  They  are  a  distinct  stock, 
therefore,  from  the  later  immigrants,  the  Philistines,  Ammonites, 
Moabites,  and  Edomites,  and  must  be  discriminated  from  them. 
Their  primitive  claim  to  the  land  of  Canaan  was  recognised  by 
the  old  Israelitish  patriarchs,  by  Abraham  at  Hebron,  by  Jacob 
at  Shechem  (Gen.  xxxiii.  19),  and  was  testified  by  the  regular 
purchase  of  land.  As  for  the  races  of  giants,  such  as  the  sons 
of  Anak  and.  the  like,  who  once  in  a  while  appear  upon  the 
scene,  and  who  have  been  considered  by  some  as  a  more 
ancient  race  of  possessors  still,  there  is  no  proof,  even  if  they 
were  not  true  mythic  Titans,  that  they  preceded  the  immigra¬ 
tion  of  the  Canaanites,  although  they  gradually  disappeared 
before  them.  Yet  other  races  are  named  as  occupying  the 
country  in  the  primeval  period  of  its  history,  who  were  probably 
extirpated  at  the  time  of  the  conquest  effected  by  the  sons  of 
Eber  or  Heber. 

On  the  eastern  frontier  of  Canaan,  for  example,  the  Emims, 
Zamzummims,  and  ITorims,  are  spoken  of  as  destroyed  by  the 
Moabites,  Ammonites,  and  Edomites  (Deut.  ii.  10-12,  and 
19,  20),  and  upon  the  west  side  the  Avims  at  Hazerim  were 
compelled  to  yield  to  the  Philistines  (Deut.  ii.  23)  ;  but  we 
never  hear  of  Canaanitish  tribes  in  this  connection.  The 
existence  of  Canaanites  on  the  Mediterranean — that  is,  of 
Phoenicians — and  of  the  same  race  in  the  interior,  as  confirmed 
by  the  views  of  the  Israelitish  invaders,  is  an  important  his¬ 
torical  fact  in  connection  with  the  relation  between  the  land 
and  the  people.  The  Phoenician,  like  the  Hebrew  name  Chna, 
written  in  the  Alexandrian  form  Chanaan,  Canaan,  signifies, 
according  to  its  etymology,  terra  depressa ,  lowland,1 — an  expres- 
1  Rosenmiiller,  Bill.  Alterthumsk.  i.  pp.  75,  76. 



sion  in  contrast  with  Aram,  high  land  (probably  along  the  upper 
Euphrates),  and  harmonizing,  it  may  be,  with  the  nature  of  the 
country  thus  named ;  especially  as  a  third  form  in  common  use, 
O-Chna  (Ochna),  designated  the  coast  of  Canaan,  a  lowland 
district  corresponding  to  the  strip  of  plain  running  the  most  of 
the  way  from  Gaza  to  Sidon,  and  on  which  lay  the  great 
commercial  cities  of  the  land. 

Movers,  1  in  his  admirable  investigations  regarding  the  land 
of  Canaan,  remarks,  however,  that  in  profane  writers  Phoenicia 
extends  beyond  the  two  cities  of  Tyre  and  Sidon,  and  embraces 
the  territory  of  Aradus,  Byblus,  and  Berytus,  at  the  north,  and 
extends  towards  the  interior  as  far  as  Lebanon.  If  this  is  true, 
the  signification  of  the  name  Canaan  as  lowland  by  no  means 
corresponds  to  the  physical  character  of  Phoenicia,  and  is  still 
less  adapted  to  describe  the  interior  of  Palestine,  which  is  rather 
a  mountain  land  than  the  reverse.  Moses  has  well  depicted 
its  character  (Deut.  xi.  11),  where  he  says:  “  But  the  land 
whither  ye  go  to  possess  it  is  a  land  of  hills  and  valleys,  and 
drinketh  water  of  the  rain  of  heaven.”  The  conjecture  is 
therefore  a  very  natural  one,  that  the  name  Canaan  was  origi¬ 
nally  applied  to  a  very  much  smaller  district  than  at  a  later 
time,  as  was  the  case  with  Argos.  The  primitive  name, 
boundaries,  and  condition  of  Canaan  throw  much  light  upon 
the  state  of  the  country  just  prior  to  its  conquest  by  the 
Israelites,  and  lead  to  a  far  more  certain  knowledge  of  its 
geographical  character  than  we  could  otherwise  attain.  This 
method  is  the  most  secure  guide  between  the  past  and  the 
present  of  Palestine. 

The  application  by  Isaiah  of  the  term  u  cities  of  Canaan  ” 
to  Tyre  and  Sidon;  the  modern  identification  of  the  word 
merchant  with  Canaanite,  which  must  have  referred  to  the 
ancient  commercial  importance  of  the  Phoenician  cities;  the 
allusion  in  Gen.  x.  15  to  Sidon,  the  oldest  son  of  Canaan; 
and  the  constant  pre-eminence  which  is  given  to  the  name 
Sidon,  all  through  the  Old  Testament,  in  respect  to  age,  power, 
and  splendour,  show  that  in  the  primitive  use  of  the  word  the 
term  Canaan  was  closely  connected  with  Sidon  and  Sidonian 
Tyre.  And  this  view  is  confirmed  by  the  etymology  of  the  word, 

1  Movers,  iiber  die  Bedeutung  des  Namens  Canaan,  in  the  journal  quoted 
above,  v.  pp.  21-43. 



which,  in  its  rudimentary  form  signifies  a  plain,  and  probably 
refers  to  the  tract  of  level  land  ten  or  eleven  hours’  journey 
long,  and  an  hour’s  journey  broad,  which  follows  the  shore, 
lying  between  the  Promontorium  Album,  three  hours  south  of 
Sur  (Tyre),  and  Nahr  el  Auli  (Bostrenus),  an  hour  north  of 
Said  (Sidon). 

Yet  the  name  Canaan  never  was  confined  for  any  length 
of  time  to  this  contracted  district,  but  was  applied  at  different 
times  to  a  tract  of  such  varying  extent,  that  incorrect  ideas 
regarding  it  rose  naturally,  which  we  must  understand  if  we 
would  comprehend  the  character  of  the  different  classes  of 
population  which  inhabited  it. 

The  northern  frontier  of  Canaan — which  was  never  more 
exactly  laid  down  than  in  the  account  given  in  Num.  xxxiv.  7, 
already  referred  to,  and  which,  excepting  during  the  reigns  of 
David  and  Solomon,  was  never  free  from  strifes  between  Israel 
and  the  adjacent  nations — we  are  only  able  to  trace  in  full  from 
the  records  of  Persian  and  Roman  writers,  while  the  boundary 
line  on  the  east  and  south  is  fully  described  in  the  Jewish 

During  the  time  of  the  Persians,  according  to  Herodotus, 
Phoenicia,  with  Cyprus  and  with  the  Palestine  portion  of 
Syria,  made  the  fifth  department  in  the  Persian  Empire.  It 
began  in  the  north,  on  the  southern  border  of  the  Cilician 
territory,  at  Poseidon 1  (Poseida  in  Pococke,  now  Cape  Busseit, 
south  of  the  mouth  of  the  Orontes),  a  place  founded  by  the 
colonists  from  Argos,  and  extended  southward  as  far  as  to  the 
Egyptian  frontier.  As  the  Persians  continued  to  the  Phoeni¬ 
cians  their  former  rights  and  privileges,  it  is  but  natural  to 
suppose  that  they  retained  intact  the  ancient  boundaries ;  and 
if  so,  Phoenicia  extended  northward  as  far  as  to  the  mouth  of 
the  Orontes ;  and  Laodicea  (now  Latakieh)  and  many  other 
places — Gobala,  Heraclea,  Paltus,  Balanea,  Karne  —  were 
reckoned  as  belonging  to  Phoenicia,  yet  are  now  known  to  have 
been  also  considered  as  a  part  of  Canaan. 

At  a  later  period,  after  the  accession  of  the  Seleucidae,  and 
during  the  triumph  of  the  Roman  power,  the  river  Eleutheros, 
now  Nahr  el  Kebir,  between  Arad  us  and  Tripolis  (Ruad  and 
Tarablus),  became,  according  to  Strabo,  Pliny,  and  Ptolemy, 

1  Mannert,  Geogr.  de  Gr.  und  Rom.  vol.  vi. ;  Upper  Syria ,  p.  452. 



the  northern  frontier  of  Phoenicia,  which  may  have  continued 
to  be  so  regarded  subsequently  to  that  ancient  period  when 
the  Phoenician  inhabitants  of  Aradus  pushed  their  territorial 
limits  far  beyond  that  stream.  Yet,  however  old  that  extension 
towards  the  north  may  have  been,  it  had  no  relation  to  the 
“ low  land”  of  Phoenicia,  nor  to  the  primitive  limits  of  Canaan, 
from  which,  in  the  Old  Testament,  the  three  northern  cities 
of  Phoenicia — Aradus,  Berytus,  and  Byblus — were  expressly 
excluded.  According  to  Gen.  x.  19,  no  tribes  of  Canaanitish  or 
Phoenician  blood  lived  along  the  sea-coast  north  of  Sidon.  The 
inhabitants  of  the  Lebanon  too,  the  Giblites  (Josh.  xiii.  15),  who 
lived  in  the  domain  under  the  control  of  Byblus  and  Berytus, 
were  never  spoken  of  as  Canaanitish  in  their  origin, — a  fact 
which  explains  what  has  been  learned  but  recently  regarding 
their  religious  and  social  condition.1  The  independent  exten¬ 
sion  of  the  Phoenician  territory  northward,  beyond  the  limits 
of  the  ancient  “  lowland  of  Canaan,”  is  indicated  in  the 
Mosaic  record,  in  connection  with  Aradus  (Arvadi),  Arka 
(Arki),  Sin  (Sini),  Simyra  (Zemari),  Hamath  (Hamathi),  by 
the  expression,  Gen.  x.  18,  “And  afterward  were  the  families 
of  the  Canaanites  spread  abroad.”  The  Sidonian  colonies 
worked  northward,  and  planted  themselves  at  Arad,  Botrys, 
Tripolis,  and  elsewhere,2  carrying  the  name  of  Phoenicia  with 
them,  but  not  the  name  of  Canaan. 

The  Southern  and  Eastern  Boundaries. 

If  the  northern  limits  of  Canaan  seem  somewhat  unsettled, 
and  enlarge  themselves  somewhat  indefinitely,  in  the  south  they 
have  a  compensatory  construction,  through  the  violent  entrance 
of  foreign  tribes,  who  remained  in  possession  of  the  country, 
and  who  had  in  some  cases,  as  in  that  of  the  Philistines  for 
example,  taken  possession  prior  to  the  Xsraelitish  conquest. 
That  region  was  taken  into  the  reckoning  at  the  time  of  the 
division  by  lot  among  the  tribes,  because  it  was  included  among 
the  districts  which  had  previously  belonged  to  Canaan  (Deut. 

1  F.  E.  Movers,  Die  Phonizier ,  Bonn  1811,  vol.  i.  p.  3  et  seq. 

2  Bochart,  Geogr.  Sacr.  P.  ii.  ;  Chanaan,  s.  de  Coloniis  Phoenician , 
Opp.  1692,  fol.  351;  Hamacker,  Miscellanea  Phcenic.  Lugcl.  Bat.  1828, 
lib.  vi.  116-307;  0.  G.  Tychsen,  Geogr.  Verhreitung  phonieischer  Miinzen, 
in  T.  Hartmann,  Bremen  1820,  Pt.  ii.  p.  496  et  seq. 



ii.  23).  In  Joshua’s  time,  however,  when  he  was  u  old  and 
stricken  with  years,”  the  country  extended  from  the  brook  el- 
Arish,  known  as  the  river  of  Egypt,  over  the  whole  district  of 
the  Pentapolis,  Gaza,  Ashdod,  Askelon,  Gath,  and  Ekron  (now 
Akir,  south  of  Joppa  and  east  of  Yabna,  Jamnia),  according 
to  Pobinson.1  The  Philistines  could  claim,  therefore,  to  be  con¬ 
sidered  as  Canaanites,  although  they  did  not  extend  so  far  north 
as  to  the  Phoenician  territory,  which,  according  to  the  classic 
authors,  Josephus,  Pliny,  Ptolemy,  and  others  (Strabo  not  in¬ 
cluded),  reached  as  far  southward  as  the  place  where  Caesarea 
was  afterwards  built,  but  no  farther,  since  the  little  known 
patch  of  sea-coast  between  Caesarea  and  Ekron,  in  which  the 
harbour  of  Joppa  alone  excited  the  attention  or  interest  of 
foreigners,  was  reckoned  as  a  part  of  Syrian  Palestine.  Pliny 
says,  v.  14 :  Caesarea  .  .  .  finis  Palaestinae  .  .  .  deinde 
Phoenice.  Carmel  is  called  in  Josephus  a  Tyrian,  and  in 
Ilesychius  a  Phoenician,  mountain ;  older  references  to  this 
lower  district  are  lacking  both  in  sacred  and  profane  writings ; 
and  nothing  definite  can  now  be  settled  regarding  it,  excepting 
that  the  northern  border  of  the  Philistines  seems  never  to  have 
met  the  southern  border  of  the  Phoenicians.  The  people  who 
lived  in  the  intermediate  district,  and  whose  wars  and  aggres¬ 
sions  are  recounted  in  the  book  of  Judges  (see  iii.  3),  can  only 
be  reckoned  among  the  Canaanites.  And  although  the  places 
lying  more  to  the  south — Joppa,  Jamnia,  Askelon,  and  Gaza 
— are  spoken  of  by  writers,  from  Pliny  to  Stephen  Byz.,  as 
Phoenician,  yet  it  is  only  in  that  broader  use  of  the  word 
which  confounded  Phoenicia  with  Canaan  as  the  one  land 
promised  to  Israel  (Num.  xxxiv.  5;  Josh.  xv.  4,  47).  Pro¬ 
copius,2  who  wrote  long  afterwards,  used  language  in  a  general 
way  (Bell.  Vandal,  ii.  10,  449),  when  he  says  that  in  the 
most  remote  antiquity  (he  means  the  time  of  Joshua)  Phoenicia 
extended  from  Sidon  to  the  Egyptian  frontier.  It  may  be 
assumed  as  certain,  that  the  people  who  lived  on  the  coast 
received  the  name  of  Canaanites  from  the  same  physical  pecu¬ 
liarity  which  has  been  mentioned  as  giving  rise  to  it  farther 
north, — namely,  its  low,  plain-like  character;  and  along  the 
whole  coast  there  are  no  tribes  mentioned  which  were  not  of 

1  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  227. 

2  Hadr.  Eeland,  Pal.  p.  50. 

VOL.  II. 




Canaanitish  origin,  with  the  exception  of  the  Philistines,  who 
had  broken  into  the  country  by  violence,  and  settled  there. 

It  is  very  different  with  the  eastern  from  the  southern  and 
western  frontier:  there  can  hardly  be  a  true  eastern  boundary 
definitely  spoken  of,  unless  it  be  the  great  Jordan  valley. 
There  is  no  ground  for  believing  that  the  aboriginal  inhabitants 
of  the  central  mountain  region  ever  used  the  name  Palestine, 
which,  as  has  been  already  shown,  was  applied  to  the  lowland 
district  alone,  and  was  first  used  by  foreigners  in  connection 
with  the  level  region  along  the  coast,  and  especially  by  the 
Egyptians,  in  consequence  of  their  commercial  relations  with 
the  cities  on  the  shore.  It  may  be  considered  equally  certain, 
that  the  Phoenicians  never  applied  the  name  Canaan  to  the 
interior  country  :  there  is  no  proof  that  they  did  so ;  and  had 
they  given  it  a  name  which  wTas  used  in  connection  with  their 
own  domain  at  all,  they  would  have  called  it  Phoenice,  which 
corresponded  completely  to  the  word  Canaan,  and  applied  that 
designation  to  the  whole  of  Judaea.  I  may  remark  incidentally, 
that  what  was  called  the  Paralia,  answers  onlv  to  the  designation 
Palm-land,  receiving  its  name,  according  to  Calisthenes,1  on  airo 

$Olvl/C(0V  TTjS  XvpLClS  TMP  TTCLpaktcLV  OLKOVVTCOV,  TO  < pVTOV  eAafSs 

ttjv  TTpoo-pyopLciv ;  and  Reland  adds  :  Quod  ad  nomen  attinet 
Phoeniees,  id  a  palinis  esse  ductum,  mihi  videtur  verisimile. 

It  is  not  at  all  supposable  that  the  aboriginal  inhabitants  of 
that  Palestine  mountain-land  called  themselves  Canaanites,  i.e. 
Lowlanders,  even  although  they  may  have  been  of  the  same 
primitive  stock;  and  all  the  less  that  they  were  divided  into 
countless  tribes,  having  no  unity  of  purpose,  as  is  evident  from 
the  manifest  want  of  a  common  purpose  and  of  combined 
counsels  at  the  time  of  the  Israelitish  conquest.  And  if  the 
whole  country  this  side  of  the  Jordan  is  sometimes  designated 
as  Canaan  in  the  Old  Testament  Scriptures,  it  must  be  ex¬ 
plained  by  some  special  circumstances,  unless  it  be  a  sufficient 
explanation  that  the  etymological  signification  of  the  word  had 
long  disappeared,  and  the  use  of  the  word  prevailing  in  Egypt 
had  been  arbitrarily  transferred  to  the  whole  of  Palestine. 

But  Movers2  has  shown,  that  in  all  the  Bible  passages  the 

1  Aristotelis  de  mirab.  ausc.  ed.  J.  Beckmann,  Gott.  1736,  p.  292  ;  II. 
Reland,  Pal.  p.  50. 

2  Movers,  i.a.l.  p.  41. 


word  Canaan  was  applied  as  an  obsolete  name  to  the  territory 
this  side  the  Jordan,  and  was  used  by  the  Israelites  before 
they  became  familiar  with  that  fact;  and  after  their  conquest 
of  the  country  it  was  employed  only  archaically,  to  designate  its 
previous  condition.  All  the  Hebrew  writers,  from  Josephus 
back,  speak  of  the  land  of  Canaan  only  when  they  refer  to  the 
primitive  inhabitants  of  the  land,  or  refer  to  the  wanderings  of 
the  old  patriarchs  in  it,  or  recount  the  promises  of  God,  and 
their  fulfilment.  Where  these  conditions  do  not  exist,  they 
employ  other  names,  like  the  land  of  Israel,  and  the  land  of 
Jehovah.  It  was  impossible  for  the  old  name  to  remain  after 
the  physical  condition  of  the  country  was  understood  ;  and  we 
find,  accordingly,  that  at  an  early  date  the  Israelites  learned  the 
etymological  signification  of  the  word  Canaan  :  for  in  speaking 
of  the  Ilittites,  the  Jebusites,  and  the  Amorites,  dwellers  in  the 
mountains  were  referred  to  ;  while  the  Canaanites  are  said  to 
have  dwelt  by  the  sea  and  by  the  coast  of  Jordan  (Num.  xiii. 
29).  So,  too,  Joshua  (xi.  3)  speaks  of  “the  Canaanite  on  the 
east  and  on  the  west,”  referring  to  the  people  on  the  coast  and 
in  the  Jordan  valley;  and  in  most  of  the  noteworthy  passages 
in  the  book  of  Joshua,  the  low  district  near  Jericho  stands  in 
close  connection  with  the  term  Canaan,  and  in  contrast  with  the 
mountain  land  of  Gilead.  We  find  the  same  in  the  allusions 
to  the  tribes  of  Reuben,  Gad,  and  the  half  tribe  of  Manasseb, 
in  Num.  xxxiii.  51  and  Josh.  xxii.  I  need  not  tell  the  reader 
that  the  later  fathers,  and  the  whole  ecclesiastical  literature 
which  followed,  have  given  to  the  name  Canaan  a  signification 
entirely  different  from  its  primitive  one. 


Exactly  in  accordance  with  the  reputed  origin  of  the  word 
Canaan,  as  the  Lowland  of  the  region  now  called  Palestine,  is 
the  traditional  account  of  the  first  settlement  of  the  sons  of 
Canaan  directly  after  the  Flood.  Their  names  were  borne  by 
the  cities  which  they  built, — for  example,  Aradus,  Arke,  Sin, 
Simyra,  Hamath, — while  other  personal  appellatives  were  given 
to  local  districts,  like  Shechem,  Eshcol,  and  Mamre.  On  the 
contrary,  whole  tribes — like  the  Giblites,  the  dwellers  in  moun- 



tains;  the  Sidonians,  or  the  race  of  fishermen — bore  names 
which  were  indigenous,  and  had  gods1 — Baal,  Astarte,  Baaltis, 
Cosmos,  Aion,  Protogonos,  Casius,  Lebanon — of  their  own,  and 
not  imported  from  abroad.  This  was  in  strong  contrast  with 
the  Hebrews  and  Israelites,  who  traced  their  history,  their 
origin,  their  God  even  (who  had  already  been  the  God  of 
Abraham  in  Ur  of  the  Chaldees),  and  all  their  traditions,  to 
Inner  Asia.  And  so  we  have  two  successive  populations  of 
one  and  the  same  land,  both  connected  with  the  Semitic  stock, 
yet  displaying  the  greatest  antagonism,  and  living  in  lasting 
hatred  and  contention.  The  want  of  all  traditional  information 
regarding  the  connection  of  the  people  of  Canaan  with  the 
other  Semitic  tribes,  seems  to  display  itself  very  early  in  the 
genealogical  record  of  the  Canaanites  as  the  descendants  of 
Ham."  I  refer  to  the  well-known  Mosaic  list  of  races,  accord¬ 
ing  to  which  the  Hebrews  traced  their  relationship  through 
Eber  to  Shem,  and  yet  the  Hebrews  and  the  Canaanites  speak 
the  same  dialect.  The  Hebrews  identified  no  close  ties  between 
these  two  races,  as  they  did  between  the  Aramaean  and  the 
most  of  the  Arabian  tribes — the  sons  of  Joctan,  Himyarites, 
for  example.  The  mention  of  Canaan  as  brother  of  Mizraim, 
the  head  of  the  Egyptian  race,  and  of  Cush,  the  head  of  the 
Cushites,  could  not  probably  be  made  without  some  reference 
to  the  Canaanitish  ideas  of  their  national  origin  ;  for  if  the  sepa¬ 
ration  of  the  Canaanites  from  the  more  eastern  Semitic  tribes 
had  been  of  very  early  origin,  all  trace  of  the  primitive  unity 
would  have  been  lost.  The  kindred  tribes  descended  from 
Eber,  and  those  who  afterwards  became  the  nomadic  Hebrews, 
preserved  the  Aramaean  dialect  of  the  Semitic  language,  from 
which  the  Arabian  had  alreadv  broken  loose ;  but  the  Canaanites 
must  long  before  have  lost  sight  of  the  connection  which  bound 
them  to  the  common  stock,  since  the  Hebrews,  who  emigrated 
to  Palestine  in  the  time  of  Abraham,  found  the  Canaanites 
thus  early  a  people  claiming  to  have  been  long  resident  there, 
independent  of  the  Aramaean  and  Arabian  dialects,  and  pos¬ 
sessing  a  language  which  passed  over  more  or  less  fully  to  the 
Hebrew  patriarchs,  as  we  find  demonstrated  by  the  real  unity 
existing  between  the  Hebrew  and  Phoenician  languages.  A 

1  Movers,  Die  Phonicier  passim,  and  ZeitscTir.  i.a.l.  p.  4  et  sq. 

2  Movers,  Die  alien  Canaaniter ,  in  Zeitsch.  N.  F.  Jalirg.  vi.  pp.  59-88. 


very  remarkable  exchange  of  a  mother  tongue  at  so  early  a 
period,  and  one  which  would  be  hard  to  explain  and  hard  to 
believe  possible  as  happening  to  a  whole  people,  but  which 
probably  resulted,  as  Movers1  has  shown,  from  the  speedy  and 
complete  transfer  of  a  closely  united  community  like  that  of 
Abraham  into  a  new  atmosphere  of  language.  To  this  un¬ 
doubtedly  the  frequent  marriage  relations  entered  into  with 
the  people  of  the  country  contributed  (Gen.  xxxviii.,  xxxiv.  2  ; 
Judg.  xxi.  12  ;  Ezra  x.  18-44). 

In  order  to  understand  the  character  of  the  primitive  popu¬ 
lation  of  Palestine,  and  the  really  unequal  nature  of  the  contest 
which  brought  the  country  into  the  possession  of  Israel,  it  is 
important  to  observe,  that  the  so-called  Canaanites  cannot  be 
regarded  as  a  body  of  tribes  closely  united  from  the  very 
beginning,  but,  so  far  as  we  can  now  ascertain,  they  were 
rent  up  into  countless  factions,  and  presented  an  instance  of 
unexampled  want  of  nationality.  The  very  want  of  a  common 
name  to  call  them  by  is  a  remarkable  phenomenon  ;  for  Canaan, 
a  term  given  by  foreigners,  is  merely  one  drawn  from  the 
lowlands  of  the  country,  and  is  applied  to  those  tribes  which 
were  not  of  Semitic  origin,  and  were  connected  with  the 
Egyptians,  without  any  pretence  to  a  proper  application  to 
those  which  did  not  belong  to  the  Lowland,  or  Canaan,  in  the 
most  limited  use  of  the  term.  According  to  this,  the  descend- 
ants  of  Jebus  (the  Jebusites  of  the  mountain  land  around 
Jerusalem),  of  Amor  (the  Amorites  on  the  east  side  of  the 
Jordan),  of  Girgas  (the  Girgashites  on  both  banks  of  the 
Jordan),  of  Hiv  (the  Hivites  in  North  Galilee),  and  of 
Hamath  (on  the  east  side  of  Anti-Lebanon),  have  only  a 
nominal  connection  with  the  Canaanites,  and  are  not  to  be 
understood  to  be  of  the  same  stock. 

This  view  is  supported  by  the  fact,  that  every  king  was 
the  possessor  of  his  own  little  domain.  In  northern  Canaan, 
Joshua  mentions  thirty-one  kings  by  name;  and  the  book  of 
J udges  (i.  7)  speaks  of  seventy  kings  of  the  Canaanites  who  were 
conquered  by  the  tribe  of  Judah.  Countless  fortresses  and 
armed  bodies  of  men,  compelled  to  yield  before  the  advance  of 
the  shepherd  race  of  Israel,  without  any  knowledge  of  war, 
had  for  centuries  been  engaged  in  mutual  contest ;  and  yet  one 
1  Movers,  Pie  alien  Canaaniter ,  in  Zeitsch.  N.  F.  Jahrg.  vi.  p.  62  et  sq. 



kingdom  after  another  was  reduced,  and  the  whole  country 
brought  into  subjection,  in  consequence  of  the  want  of  a  com¬ 
mon  head,  and  a  common  bond  of  unity  against  the  general 
foe,  to  which  there  seems  to  be  no  exception,  save  among  the 
Philistines  and  in  the  case  of  Jab  in  king  of  Razor,  wdio  sum¬ 
moned  his  neighbours,  and  met  Joshua  at  the  waters  of  Merom 
(Josh.  xi.  1-6).  This  hasty  combination,  however,  wTas  to  no 
effect,  for  there  was  no  deep  central  principle  of  unity  that 
could  give  security  in  time  of  danger. 

It  is  only  from  the  violent  convulsions  which  rent  the 
Canaanite  tribes  in  the  most  remote  antiquity,  that  wre  can 
understand  how  widely  sundered  they  were  at  the  time  of  the 
invasion  of  their  territory  by  the  Israelites,  and  how  scattered 
were  single  tribes  in  some  cases, — as,  for  example,  the  Hivites, 
a  portion  of  whom  lived  in  the  north,  another  in  the  middle, 
and  another  in  the  south  of  Palestine,  as  we  gather  from  the 
scattered  notices  of  them  in  the  earliest  books  of  the  Bible.  The 
Kenizzites,  too,  were  found  in  various  parts  of  the  south,  rent 
by  internal  faction,  and  scattered  through  Judsea  and  Edom. 
The  Gfeshurites,  whose  boundaries  extended  from  Hermon  to 
Bashan  (Josh.  xii.  5  ;  Deut.  iii.  14),  appear  also  in  the  south 
country  near  the  Philistine  territory  (Josh.  xiii.  12  ;  1  Sam. 
xxvii.  8),  near  the  Egyptian  frontier,  wliere  David  met  and 
overcame  them.  It  is  just  so  with  the  Girgashites  and  with 
the  powerful  tribe  of  the  Amorites,  who  possessed  a  large  terri¬ 
tory  beyond  the  Jordan  (Deut.  ii.  24),  and  at  the  same  time 
occupied  a  domain  in  the  mountain  land  around  Jerusalem, 
and  sent  out  the  five  kimrs  who  were  overthrown  at  Gibeon 


(Josh.  x.  5). 

Among  all  these  Canaanitish  tribes  there  existed  no  genea¬ 
logical  tradition  giving  rise  to  a  general  belief  in  a  descent  from 
a  former  patriarchal  head,  as  there  wras  among  the  other 
Semitic  tribes,  who  called  themselves  sons  of  Ammon,  of 
Edom,  of  Moab,  of  Israel,  and  the  like.  Even  among  the 
descendants  of  Sidon  this  was  not  the  case ;  and  they  did  not 
speak  of  themselves  as  children  of  Sidon,  but  as  Sidonim,  and 
made  no  more  mention  of  Sidon  as  the  founder  of  the  city  and 
state,  than  of  Hierosolymus  or  Carchedon  as  the  founders  of 
Jerusalem  and  Carthage.  The  Hittites  alone  form  an  excep¬ 
tion  to  this  general  rule  :  they  traced  their  lineage  back  to  Heth 



(Gen.  x.  15),  were  called  sons  of  Xleth  by  the  Israelites,  and 
were  held  in  a  good  degree  of  respect  (Gen.  xxiii.  5,  7). 

From  what  has  now  been  said,  it  will  readily  be  seen, 
although  the  data  are  very  incomplete  regarding  these  so- 
called  Canaanite  tribes,  that  they  cannot  be  distinguished  by 
any  special  characteristics  of  language,  religion,  or  govern¬ 
ment  from  the  neighbouring  tribes,  and  not  even  by  physical 
boundaries,  since  they  occupied  in  some  cases — that  of  the 
Amorites,  for  example — both  sides  of  the  Jordan.  Yet,  notwith¬ 
standing  such  occasional  exceptions,  the  district  east  of  the 
Jordan  was  never  reckoned  as  belonging  to  Canaan ;  nor  were 
its  inhabitants  ever  included  among  the  Canaanites,  although 

a  7  O 

their  names  are  mentioned  as  such  in  the  list  found  in  Genesis. 


The  circumstances  already  mentioned  show  how  important 
it  is  to  gather  up  what  historical  facts  we  can  regarding  the 
various  tribes  which  possessed  Canaan,  in  order  to  understand 
the  nature  of  the  country  in  which  Israel  found  its  permanent 

We  know  as  little  of  the  immigration  of  the  tribes  which 
inhabited  the  interior  highland  region  of  Palestine,  as  of  those 
which  settled  the  lowland,  or  Canaan  proper  ;  but  there  are  so 
many  passages  in  the  Old  Testament  which  hint  at  their  con¬ 
dition,  that  we  are  not  without  the  means  of  determining  with 
a  considerable  degree  of  accuracy,  what  subdivisions  those 
tribes  were  broken  into,  and  what  successive  processes  of  con¬ 
quest  and  extermination  they  were  subjected  to :  for  the 
gathering  up  into  the  record  which  we  now  possess  of  the 
incidents  which  occurred  in  the  time  of  the  patriarchs,  took 
place  at  a  period  when  the  recollection  of  the  successive 
changes  in  the  character  of  the  country  and  its  population 
could  not  have  been  wholly  lost. 

The  condition  of  the  inhabitants  of  Canaan  at  the  time 
of  the  patriarchs  must  have  been  very  different  from  what  it 
was  five  hundred  years  later,  at  the  time  of  Moses.  The  land 
was  sparsely  covered  with  dwellings,  and  but  thinly  populated : 



herdsmen  with  their  families  wandered  through  it  freely  from 
one  end  to  the  other.  When  Abraham  took  up  his  abode  near 
Bethel,  he  said  to  his  nephew  Lot,  at  parting  with  him,  u  Is  not 
the  whole  land  before  thee?”  Abraham  went  to  the  south,  to 
Pharan,  and  dug  wells  for  himself  at  Beersheba ;  and  at  a  later 
day,  Jacob  went  with  just  as  little  hindrance  along  the  east  side 
of  the  Jordan  to  Gilead,  crossing  the  Jabbok  at  its  ford,  and 
set  up  his  huts  or  booths  in  Succoth  (Gen.  xxxi.  47,  xxxii.  22, 
xxxiii.  17). 

At  the  time  of  Abraham  there  existed  but  very  few  of 
those  cities  with  which  Canaan  was  covered  at  the  time  of 
Moses;  and  the  few  which  were  standing  received  their  names 
from  persons  then  living,  such  as  Shecliem,  from  the  chief  of 
the  Hivites  (Gen.  xxxiv.  2)  ;  Mamre,  from  the  brother  of 
Eshcol  and  Aner,  the  Amorite  (Gen.  xiv.  13,  24).  Hebron 
alone  seems  to  go  back  to  the  remotest  antiquity.  It  is  men¬ 
tioned  as  the  place  where  Sarah  died  (Gen.  xxiii.  2).  It  was 
built  seven  years  before  Zoan  (San,  i.e.  Tanis  in  Egypt),  and 
kept  its  primitive  name,  while  other  places  lost  them  when  a 
new  people  took  possession  of  them, — as,  for  example,  Luz, 
whose  name  Jacob  changed  to  Bethel  (Gen.  xxviii.  19). 

There  is  not  a  trace  to  be  found  in  the  old  patriarchal 
records,  of  those  warlike  cities,  and  those  bold,  well-armed,  and 
defiant  tribes  whom  Joshua  encountered  five  hundred  years 
later :  for  after  Lot  had  been  taken  captive  by  Chedorlaomer, 
we  find  that  Abraham  was  able,  with  the  three  hundred  and 
eighteen  servants  who  were  born  in  his  house,  to  pursue  the 
enemy  of  his  kinsman,  to  overcome  him  easily,  to  pursue  him 
to  Dan  and  Hobah  near  Damascus,  and  to  take  from  him  all 
his  goods  (Gen.  xiv.  15).  The  inhabitants  of  the  land  at  that 
early  period  appear  to  have  been  a  peace-loving  people,  from 
whom  the  early  Hebrews  received  no  injury,  but  only  kindness, 
as  in  the  case  of  Melchisedec  king  of  Salem  (xiv.  18,  xxxiv.  8). 
The  Philistines,  on  the  contrary,  were  a  hostile  race,  and  in 
Jacob’s  time  closed  the  wells,  that  the  Hebrew  patriarch  might 
have  no  water  for  his  flocks  (Gen.  xxvi.  15,  16).  The  princes 
of  the  country  wTere  then  not  at  all  the  warlike  kings  whom 
the  Israelites  encountered,  and  they  made  no  objection  to  the 
peaceful  entrance  of  the  nomadic  Hebrews  who  chose  to  settle 
amonff  them. 




1.  The  Perizzites , 

According  to  tlie  biblical  account,  there  were,  at  the  time  of 
the  patriarchs,  but  two  radically  different  primitive  classes  of 
population — the  Canaanites  and  the  Perizzites.  In  the  account 
of  the  parting  of  Abraham  from  Lot,  we  read,  u  The  Canaanite 
and  the  Perizzite  dwelt  then  in  the  land.”  This  sharp  distinc¬ 
tion  is  repeated  in  two  subsequent  passages  (Judg.  i.  4,  5), 
where,  after  the  death  of  Joshua,  these  two  different  races  are 
named  as  existing  in  southern  Judea.  The  omission  of  the 
important  tribe  of  the  Perizzites  in  the  enumeration  of  the 
peoples  of  Canaan,  Gen.  x.,  is  therefore  not  accidental,  as  they 
were  regarded  as  radically  different  from  them,  and  as  such 
had  their  own  special  place  in  the  list  of  tribes,  after  the  most 
important  Canaanitic  names  (Ex.  xxxiv.  11;  Judg.  iii.  5).  The 
Perizzites  seemed  to  be  distinguished  from  the  Canaanites,  who 
lived  in  cities,  by  their  nomadic  habits;  and  even  the  etymology 
of  their  name,  which  signifies  the  separated,  affords  proof  that 
they  were  the  Beduins  of  that  time,  and  shows  that  in  the  most 
remote  periods  there  existed  the  same  contrast  which  we  now 
find  among  Arabs  and  Syrians. 

Besides  the  Canaanites,  who  are  distinguished  from  the 
wandering  Perizzites  by  their  more  regular  and  settled  habits, 
their  political  condition,  and  their  residence  in  towns,  we  find 
mentioned  only  two  important  races  living  in  the  country  at 
the  time  of  the  patriarchs — the  Hittites  and  the  Hivites :  there 
is  no  mention  as  yet  of  the  Amorites,  who  afterwards  became 
so  powerful  and  important,  and  who  pushed  their  way  north¬ 
wards  from  the  desert  of  Paran  (Gen.  xiv.  7,  13;  Judg.  i. 
34,  3G). 

2.  The  Hittites} 

These  are  the  oldest,  and  probably,  at  a  remote  period,  the 
only  inhabitants  of  the  interior  of  Palestine.  The  coupling  of 
their  founder’s  name  Hetli  (Chet)  with  that  of  Sidon  in  the  list 
of  tribes  contained  in  Genesis,  indicates  their  extreme  antiquity; 
and  in  almost  all  successive  enumerations,  they  take  the  first 
place  after  the  Canaanites  proper — that  is,  the  Phoenicians — and 
only  in  two  places  are  the  Amorites  named  before  them.  Never, 

1  Ewald,  Gesch.  i.  p.  281. 



as  Moyers  shows,  are  other  tribes — such  as  the  Girgashites, 
Jebusites,  Hivites,  and  others — ranked  before  them.  And  yet 
at  the  time  of  the  conquest  of  Canaan  they  were  by  no  means 
the  most  formidable  warriors,  for  the  Amorites  were  the  most 
powerful  tribe.  Indeed,  at  the  time  of  Moses,  they  were  quite 
insignificant :  no  cities  are  mentioned  as  belonging  to  them ; 
they  are  not  named  separately  as  enemies  of  Israel,  but  always  in 
connection  with  other  tribes;  while  the  cities  of  the  Canaanites, 
Amorites,  Hivites,  and  Jebusites,  are  often  spoken  of  as  waging 
war  independently  against  Israel.  But  the  old  place  of  honour 
was  always  assigned  to  this  ancient  and  powerful  tribe,  notwith¬ 
standing  its  subsequent  want  of  importance. 

The  Hittites  played  an  important  part  at  the  time  of 
Abraham,  when  they  were  lords  of  the  district  around  Hebron. 
They  were  a  people  of  gentle  habits,  living  in  well-regulated 
communities ;  and  their  intercourse  with  the  ancient  Hebrew 
patriarch  was  marked  with  the  greatest  courtesy  during  the 
negotiations  for  Sarah’s  burying-place  (Gen.  xxiii.).  We  read 
that  Abraham  displayed  the  greatest  reverence  before  them 
(Gen.  xxiii.  7) :  “  He  bowed  himself  to  the  children  of  the  land, 
even  to  the  children  of  Heth ;  and  he  communed  with  them.” 
The  rest  of  the  chapter  relates  in  full  the  history  of  the  trans¬ 
action.  It  is  a  remarkable  fact  that  it  wras  the  Hittites  who 
were  in  possession  of  Hebron,  the  most  ancient  city  in  the  land, 
and  a  place  built  even  before  the  oldest  Egyptian  city.  The 
connection  by  marriage  of  Esau,  the  founder  of  the  Edomites, 
with  the  daughters  of  the  Hittites  (Gen.  xxvi.  34),  confirms  the 
high  antiquity  and  the  early  importance  of  the  tribe.  They 
were  the  oldest,  and  in  the  beginning  probably  the  only,  lords 
of  the  land,  the  nomadic  Jebusites  excepted,  since  the  people 
named  second  to  them — the  Hivites — settled  only  subsequently 
in  the  interior  of  the  country.  In  the  single  place  (Josh.  i.  4) 
where  the  whole  land  of  promise,  u  from  the  wilderness  and 
this  Lebanon,  even  unto  the  great  river,  the  river  Euphrates, 
all  the  land  of  Euphrates,  and  unto  the  great  sea  toward 
the  going  down  of  the  sun,”  is  connected  with  the  tribe  of 
Hittites,  the  language  appears  to  be  used  archaically,  and  to 
refer  to  the  primitive  power  of  the  tribe.  At  a  very  remote 
period1  the  Hittites  seem  to  have  been  divided,  and  to  have 
1  Gesenius,  Comment,  zu  Jesaias ,  i.  p.  722. 



sent1  one  colony  to  Cyprus,  if  that  be  the  island  of  Chittim 
(Ezek.  xxvii.  6),  or  the  land  of  Chittim  (Isa.  xxiii.  1). 

At  the  time  of  the  conquest  of  Palestine  by  Israel,  the 
Hittites  do  not  appear  as  the  lords  of  the  land.  Scattered 
remnants  of  the  tribe,  however,  are  mentioned  as  late  as  the 
time  of  David;  for  Uriah  (mentioned  in  2  Sam.  xi.  3,  xxiii.  39) 
was  a  Hittite.  Solomon  brought  all  the  remnants  of  the 
conquered  tribes  into  bondage  (1  Kings  ix.  20)  ;  and  the  kings 
of  the  Hittites  mentioned  in  x.  29  are  not  to  be  connected 
with  Palestine,  but  with  Cyprus  or  Chittim.  And  the  passage 
in  Judg.  i.  26,  which  speaks  of  the  building  of  Luz,  in  the 
land  of  the  Hittites,  refers  to  the  same  island;  for  that  tribe 
was  never  found  so  far  north  as  Bethel,  and  “  the  man”  who 
“  went  into  the  land  of  the  Hittites”  must  have  removed  from 
Palestine  to  Cyprus. 

3.  The  Ilivites. 

This  tribe,  the  second  of  the  primitive  Canaanitic  ones,  was 
a  mountain  people,  and  had  its  true  home  in  the  Lebanon. 
Josh.  xi.  3  locates  the  Hivites  near  Mount  Hermon,  in  the  land 
of  Mizpeh,  i.e.  between  Jebel  Sheikh  and  the  sources  of  the 
Jordan  ;  and  Judg.  iii.  3  is  more  definite  still  in  its  language  ; 
u  The  Hivites  that  dwelt  in  Mount  Lebanon,  from  Mount 
Baal-liermon  unto  the  entering  in  of  Hamath.”  They  are 
mentioned  as  living  there  as  late  as  the  time  of  king  David 
(2  Sam.  xxiv.  7),  and  it  is  possible  that  in  this  northern  moun¬ 
tain  land  they  were  a  powerful  people  (Josh.  ix.  1)  ;  but  in  the 
southern  part  of  the  country,  conquered  by  the  Israelites,  they 
were  not  strong.  Their  geographical  location  readily  explains 
the  fact,  that  in  the  enumeration  of  the  tribes  of  Palestine  the 
Hivites  always  have  the  last  place  but  one,  and  come  just  before 
the  still  weaker  tribe  of  Jebusites,  and  that  in  the  full  list 
contained  in  Gen.  xv.  they  are  not  mentioned  at  all.  Yet  they 
appear  sometimes  in  connection  with  localities  at  the  south, 
and  removed  a  long  distance  from  their  real  mountain  home, — 
as  at  Shechem,  for  example,  where  they  had  had  a  settlement 
for  a  longtime,  and  where  Jacob  bought  a  piece  of  land  of  a 
Hivite,  in  order  to  build  a  habitation  upon  it  (Gen.  xxxiii.  19, 
xxxiv.  2).  They  had  another  city  still  farther  to  the  south, 

1  Movers,  vi.  pp.  80-84. 



and  in  the  territory  subsequently  assigned  to  Benjamin — Gibeon, 
now  Djeb,  three  hours  distance  north  of  Jerusalem  (Josh.  ix. 
3,  7,  15).  Ewald1  suspects  that  the  name  signifies  a  “  com¬ 
munity”  in  the  Canaanitish  language.  This  city,  which  was 
independent,  preserved  its  existence,  but  was  brought  into 
vassalage  to  Israel,  and  compelled  to  be  hewers  of  wood  and 
bearers  of  water  for  the  temple  of  Jehovah.  There  wTere  also 
Hivites  farther  south,  who  connected  themselves  by  marriage 
ties  with  the  Edomites,  as  the  Hittites  had  done.  They  seem, 
therefore,  to  have  been  a  race  of  powerful  mountaineers,  who 
embraced  every  opportunity  to  force  their  way  southward,  and 
were  able  in  some  instances  to  take  up  and  hold  a  position 
surrounded  by  other  and  perhaps  hostile  tribes,  and  even  to 
maintain  themselves  against  such  enemies  as  the  Israelites  them- 
selves,  as  they  did  in  the  case  of  Gibeon.  The  greatness  of 
this  city,  the  warlike  training  of  its  citizens,  their  republican 
constitution,2 *  while  all  the  surrounding  cities  were  under  the 
rule  of  kings  (Josh.  ix.  1,  x.  1,  2),  were  peculiar  to  the  Hivites  ; 
while  their  religious  rites  in  the  tower  of  Shechem,  in  the 
house  of  the  god  Berith  (J udg.  ix.  46,  ix.  4,  viii.  33),  or  El,'5 6 
their  highest  divinity,  show  their  connection  with  the  Canaan¬ 
itish  stock. 

4.  The  A  morites .4 

Although  mentioned  in  the  list  of  Gen.  x.  in  connection 
with  the  other  Canaanitic  tribes,  the  Amorites  do  not  appear  to 
have  been  an  independent  people  in  the  primitive  patriarchal 
times.  It  is  only  later  that  they  become  important,  and  they 
are  always  mentioned  as  secondary  in  note  to  the  sons  of  IXeth, 
or  Hittites.  But  in  the  Mosaic  period  they  stand  forth  as  the 
most  powerful  and  most  warlike  tribe  of  the  Canaanites. 
Although,  with  regard  to  the  races  already  mentioned,  we  have 
only  faint  glimpses  of  their  early  history,  and  only  discern  their 
settlements  scattered  over  the  country,  and  surrounded  by  a 

1  Ewald,  Gesch.  i.  p.  283.  2  The  same,  p.  282. 

3  Movers,  p.  79 ;  and  die  Phonizier,  pp.  255-316. 

4  Movers,  vi.  pp.  84-87  ;  Rosenmiiller,  Bill  Alterthums.  ii.  p.  255  ; 

Gesenius,  in  Ersch.  Encycl.  iii.  p.  382  ;  Winer,  Bill.  Realw.  i.  54 ;  Ewald, 

Gesch.  des  Volks  Israel ,  ii.  204,  208,  etc. 

6  Winer,  Bill.  Realicorterbuch ,  3d  ed.  1847,  i.  and  ii. 



still  more  ancient  race  of  Anakim  and  Rephaim,  yet,  says 
Movers,  it  is  very  apparent  that  the  Amorites  entered  the 
country  not  long  before  the  Israelitish  conquest,  and  took 
possession  of  both  sides  of  the  Jordan.  They  probably  came 
from  a  country  at  the  south-east.  In  the  oldest  mention  of 
them  they  are  always  connected  with  the  Amalekites,  who  came 
from  Arabia  Petrsea,  and  were  overcome  by  Chedorlaomer  at 
the  time  of  Lot  in  the  valley  of  Siddim,  at  the  southern  ex¬ 
tremity  of  the  Dead  Sea  (Gen.  xiv.  7).  They  dwelt  at  that 
time  at  Hazazon  Tamar,  or  Engedi,  according  to  2  Cliron.  xx.  2. 
The  account  in  Num.  xiii.  29  makes  the  Amorites  possessed  of 
all  the  mountain  land  of  the  south  :  even  the  whole  rarrne  of  high 
lands  from  Horeb  to  Kadesh-Barnea,  which  Israel  traversed,  is 
called  in  Deut.  i.  19  the  mountain  of  the  Amorites  ;  and  Ewald1 
conjectures  that  the  name  Amorite  itself  signifies  the  inhabitant 
of  an  elevated  region.  The  passage  (Gen.  xlviii.  22)  in  which 
Jacob  speaks  of  a  lot  of  land  which  he  had  taken  with  sword 
and  bow  from  the  hand  of  the  Amorites,  can  probably  only 
be  understood  in  connection  with  southern  Canaan,  as  the  field 
at  Shechem  had  been  purchased  from  the  Hivites.  The 
Gibeonites,  however,  who  were  a  remnant  of  the  Amorites,  are 
spoken  of  (2  Sam.  xxi.  2)  as  inhabiting  the  land,  though  their 
home  was  £>i’etty  far  to  the  north.  The  Canaanitic  tribes  of 
the  south,  who  blended  in  course  of  time  their  stock  with  that 
of  the  Amorites,  assumed  gradually  that  name  as  their  common 
designation,  and  in  the  last  days  of  Joshua  the  name  Amorite 
was  given  to  all  the  enemies  of  Israel  (Josh.  xxiv.  17, 18).  They 
had  also  taken  possession  of  the  country  east  of  the  Jordan 
(Judg.  x.  8),  the  same  district  to  which  the  Ammonites  had 
long  laid  claim  (Judg.  xi.  13). 

This  region,  which  Reuben,  Gad,  and  the  half  tribe  of 
Manasseh  received  as  their  portion,  had  formerly  been  two 
great  kingdoms,  the  southern  one  of  which,  and  of  Sihon  king 
of  Heshbon,  lay  between  the  Jabbok  and  the  Arnon,  and 
extended  from  the  desert  on  the  east  to  the  Jordan  on  the  west 
(Judg.  xi.  22  ;  Num.  xxi.  13,  34).  The  northern  kingdom,  that 
of  Og,  whose  most  important  cities  were  Aslitaroth  and  Edrei, 
in  Bashan,  lay  between  the  river  Jabbok  and  Mount  Hermon 
(Num.  xxi.  33;  Josh.  xii.  5).  In  this  kingdom  of  Og  there 

1  Ewald,  Gesch.  i.  p.  280,  note. 



were  sixty  strong  cities  with  high  walls,  gates,  and  bars,  and 
many  other  towns  without  walls  (Dent.  iii.  5). 

Shortly  before  the  invasion  of  the  Israelites,  Sihon  the 
king  of  Heshbon  had  plundered  and  laid  waste  the  territory  of 
his  southern  neighbours  as  far  as  to  the  Arnon  (Num.  xxi.  26) : 
he  had  forced  his  way  southward  as  far  as  Akrabbim,  and  the 
Edomite  city  of  Petra,  where  was  the  rock  Selah  (Judg  i.  36). 
Yet  both  of  these  kingdoms  early  fell  under  the  power  of 
Israel;  and  the  most  formidable  battle,  the  most  triumphant 
victory,  which  preceded  their  taking  possession  of  the  land, 
stirred  the  Hebrews  to  songs  of  triumph,  and  gave  them  a  fresh 
impulse  in  their  career  of  conquest.1 

The  Amorites  had  likewise  become  very  powerful  in  Judah, 
on  the  west  side  of  the  Jordan,  at  the  time  of  the  Israelitish 
invasion ;  stronger  indeed  than  they  had  been  before,  when 
they  lived  at  the  southern  extremity  of  the  Dead  Sea.  On  the 
so-called  mountains  of  the  Amorites  the  Israelites  met  five  of 
their  kings.  It  required  fierce  conflicts  to  subdue  them,  such 
as  those  in  which  Joshua  engaged  at  Gibeon,  near  Beth-horon, 
and  the  valley  of  Ajalon  north-west  of  Jerusalem  (Josh.  x. 
1-14).  The  Amorite  kings  of  that  period  ruled  over  Jerusalem, 
Hebron,  Jarmuth,  Lachish,  and  Eglon,  as  the  Scripture  ex¬ 
pressly  informs  us.  Although  the  nation  was  subdued,  yet  its 
power  remained  unbroken  near  the  sea-coast ;  for  they  pressed 
afterwards  as  far  north  as  Dan  and  the  mountains,  and  did  not 
suffer  the  people  to  come  down  into  the  valleys  (Judg.  i.  34). 
They  even  began  to  inhabit  Mount  Heres  in  Ajalon  and  Shaal- 
bim  (Judg.  i.  35);  yet  the  power  of  the  tribe  of  Joseph  was  too 
weighty  for  them,  and  they  were  compelled  to  succumb,  and  had 
to  pay  tribute.  At  length,  under  Samuel,  peace  was  made  be¬ 
tween  the  Israelites  and  the  Amorites  (1  Sam.  vii.  14) ;  and  with 
the  increase  of  the  Hebrew  power,  the  strength  and  importance 
of  the  earlier  inhabitants  continually  waned  (Josh.  xvi.  10). 

Thus  wre  see  that  the  Amorites  were  comparatively  late 
invaders,  whether  they  entered  the  central  country  of  Palestine 
from  Gilead  at  the  east,  or  from  the  hill  country  of  Judah  at 
the  south.  Other  tribes  had  previously  occupied  the  places 
which  they  seized  and  possessed — the  Moabites,  Hittites,  Danites, 
and  Jebusites,  unless  the  latter  be  considered  a  subordinate 

1  Ewald,  Gesch.  ii.  p.  211  et  seq_. 



tribe  of  the  Amorites.  They  cannot  be  reckoned  among  the 
primitive  tribes  of  the  land,  although,  on  account  of  their  long 
abode  in  the  midst  of  the  so-called  Canaanites,  they  can  be 
said  to  have  belonged  to  them. 


The  very  places  which  they  occupied  show  that  the  Amorites 
were  a  race  of  invaders ;  for,  like  the  Israelites,  they  took  pos¬ 
session  of  the  hill-tops,  where  their  personal  valour  could  give 
them  the  opportunity  to  rush  down  upon  their  enemies,  and 
then  safely  withdraw;  but  the  cities  built  in  the  plains  were 
well  equipped  for  war,  and  were  so  familiar  with  all  its  arts, 
that  they  were  not  so  easily  overcome  as  some  of  the  strong¬ 
holds  on  the  lower  hills.  The  book  of  Judges  hints  at  this 
when  it  speaks  of  the  tribe  of  Judah,  which  had  been  able  to 
subdue  Gaza,  Askelon,  and  Ekron,  but  was  checked  by  even 
more  formidable  foes  (i.  19) :  u  And  the  Lord  was  with  Judah  ; 
and  he  drove  out  the  inhabitants  of  the  mountain,  but  could 
not  drive  out  the  inhabitants  of  the  valley,  because  they  had 
chariots  of  iron/’  It  was  such  a  resistance  as  that  implies 
which  Razor  offered  to  Joshua  on  the  plain  of  Merom  (Josh, 
xi.  1-12). 

5.  The  Girgashites} 

These  belong  to  the  least  important  of  the  Canaanitic  tribes, 
and  seem  to  have  immigrated  into  Palestine  from  the  territory 
east  of  the  Jordan.  In  the  original  promise  given  to  Abraham 
(Gen.  xv.  21),  the  Girgashites  and  the  Jebusites  have  the  last 
place,  and  in  most  of  the  successive  enumerations  of  the  original 
tribes  of  Canaan  they  are  omitted.  No  mention  is  made  of  them 
after  the  conquest.  It  is  possible,  however,  that  the  Gergesenes, 
mentioned  in  Matt.  viii.  28,  may  refer  to  the  descendants  of  the 
Girgashites,2  and  that  the  term  may  be  perpetuated  for  that  of 
the  old  hostile  tribe.  Jerome  and  Eusebius  speak  of  a  city 
Girgasa,  and  Origen  locates  it  near  Lake  Tiberias ;  but  nothing 
more  is  known  regarding  it,  excepting  that  at  the  time  of 
Jerome  the  name  was  ascribed  to  a  little  village  on  a  hill;  from 
which  Ewald3  acutely  draws  the  suspicion  that  the  place  was 

1  Movers,  vi.  p.  87. 

2  Mayer,  Note  v.  in  N.  Test.  Frankf.  a.  M.  1813,  p.  13  ;  compare  Miner, 
Bill.  Bealw.  art.  Gadara ,  p.  381 ;  Note  to  v.  Raumer,  Talast.  p.  3G3. 

3  Ewald,  Gesch.  i.  p.  278. 



once  the  stronghold  of  the  Girgashites,  which  in  Josh.  xi. 
bears  the  name  of  Hazor,  itself  signifying  a  castle,  or  fortified 
hill.  The  place  alluded  to  by  Jerome  lies  near  enough  to  the 
Sea  of  Galilee  to  correspond  with  the  statement  of  Matthew ; 
but  it  does  not  harmonize  with  the  conjecture  that  the  Gir¬ 
gashites  were  a  very  unimportant  tribe. 

6.  The  Jebusites. 

These  always  close  the  list  of  the  Canaanitic  tribes.  Their 
hostile  relations  to  their  neighbours,  and  the  express  statement 
that  Adonibezek  the  king  of  Jebusi,  afterwards  Jerusalem 
(Josh,  xviii.  28),  was  an  Amorite  prince  (Josh.  x.  1,  5),  show 
that  the  Jebusites  were  originally  a  branch  of  the  Amorites, 
and  that  their  king  was  properly  included  among  the  five 
Amorite  kings  who  went  out  against  Israel  (Num.  xiii.  29 ; 
Josh.  ix.  1).  They  are  probably  mentioned  as  an  independent 
tribe  in  consequence  of  their  eminent  bravery,  displayed  in  the 
stubborn  resistance  which  they  offered  to  Israel.  It  was  only 
at  the  time  of  David  that  they  were  thoroughly  conquered,  and 
even  then  they  were  not  exterminated.  The  tribe  was  over¬ 
come  by  Joshua  at  the  battle  of  Ajalon ;  but  he  could  not 
prevail  against  their  stronghold,  afterwards  Jerusalem,  which 
towered  above  the  valley  of  Hinnom  (Josh.  xv.  8).  It  is  true 
that  there  was  a  temporary  capture  of  the  lower  city,  but  the 
conquered  possession  was  not  held  long,  and  we  are  expressly 
told  (Josh.  xv.  63)  that  the  men  of  Judah  were  not  able  to  take 
Jerusalem  from  the  Jebusites. 

It  was  only  after  the  accession  of  David  to  the  throne  of 
Israel,  who  resided  for  seven  years  at  Hebron,  the  ancient 
capital,  that  war  was  carried  on  so  successfully  under  the 
leadership  of  Joab,  that  the  Jebusites  were  compelled  to  sur¬ 
render  their  stronghold  of  Jerusalem,  including  the  mountain 
of  Zion,1  which  became  thereafter  the  residence  of  David,  and 
the  capital  of  the  kingdom  of  Israel.  The  name  Jerusalem, 
which  only  afterwards  became  common,  in  taking  the  place  of 
Jebusi,  which  had  been  the  current  appellation  before,  seems 
to  have  been  in  use  to  a  certain  extent  even  before  this  time. 
It  does  not  seem  to  have  been  given  by  the  Israelites,  but  to 
have  been  a  name  foreign  to  them,  conferred  upon  the  place  by 

1  Ewald,  Gesch.  Ft.  ii.  pp.  228,  583. 



the  earlier  population  of  the  land.  The  etymology  of  the  place, 
the  u  Inheritance  of  Salem,”  or  the  u  Dwelling  of  Salem,”  in¬ 
dicates  the  same  thing ;  and  the  natural  character  of  the  spot  is 
such  that  it  must  always  have  been  a  position  of  importance  as 
a  stronghold. 

Even  after  the  capture  of  Jerusalem  there  remained  some 
Jebusites  there,  like  Araunah  (2  Sam.  xxiv.  16-25),  who  made 
peace  with  David,  and  were  allowed  to  live  quietly  in  their  old 
home.  Solomon  reduced  this  remnant,  as  he  did  all  that  were 
left  of  the  old  tribes,  into  the  condition  of  tributaries  (1  Kings 
ix.  20).  After  the  captivity,  the  Jebusites  are  brought  into 
notice  again  (Ezra  ix.  1),  the  old  hatred  having  so  far  disap¬ 
peared,  that  marriages  were  negotiated  between  them  and  the 


vol.  ir. 




LTHOUGH  I  have  sought  to  give  in  the  above  pages 
a  tolerably  definite  idea  of  the  limits  of  the  territory 
of  Canaan,  and  the  character  of  its  population  prior 
to  the  time  of  the  Israelitish  conquest,  because  that 
early  population  exercised  so  great  an  influence  over  the  whole 
subsequent  history  of  the  Hebrew  nation,  even  down  to  the 
present  time,  yet  I  have  by  no  means  exhausted  the  ethnographi¬ 
cal  and  geographical  character  of  the  country  in  the  earliest 
epochs  of  its  history,  the  influence  of  the  tribes  of  which  I  have 
spoken  having  extended  far  beyond  the  Canaanitish  frontier,  in 
the  same  way  that  David’s  domain  reached  southward  as  far  as  to 
the  Red  Sea,  northward  to  Damascus  and  Sidon,  and  westward 
to  Philistia;  and  just  as  the  kingdom  of  Herod,  the  Roman  and 
Byzantine  district  of  Palestine,  and  the  territory  held  by  the 
[Moslems  and  the  Crusaders,  extended  not  simply  to  the  west 
bank  of  the  Jordan,  but  embraced  the  illimitable  wastes  east  of 
the  Dead  Sea  and  the  Sea  of  Galilee,  expanding  at  times  till 
it  reached  to  the  Euphrates,  and  at  times  contracting  to  the 
former  limits. 

In  the  preceding  volume  I  have  had  occasion  to  refer  to 
the  southern  approaches  to  Palestine:  it  now  remains  for  me  to 
speak  of  the  primitive  inhabitants  of  the  country  immediately 
contiguous  to  Canaan,  since  these  people  commanded  the  roads 
which  led  into  the  Promised  Land,  and  had  to  be  subdued  or 
annihilated  in  order  that  Israel  might  have  free  entrance  to 
Palestine,  and  might  be  kept  separate  from  other  nations. 

The  materials  for  gaining  our  knowledge  are,  however,  very 
scanty:  there  is  very  little  that  is  trustworthy  in  the  accounts 



which  have  come  clown  from  the  remote  period  with  which  we 
have  now  to  deal,  yet  they  do  not  justify  us  in  passing  over 
without  a  single  glance  what  they  do  not  describe  in  full. 

The  most  uncertainty  is  felt  with  regard  to  what  I  must 
speak  of  at  the  outset,  and  what  may  he  called  the  beginning 
of  the  beginning  of  the  subject, — namely,  that  which  relates  to 
the  so-called  race  of  giants  which  dwelt  in  the  lands  outlying 


Most  histories  of  nations  in  their  primitive  state  begin  with 
the  story  of  a  race  of  giants.  Among  the  Mandshurians,  how¬ 
ever,  Indians,  Pehlvi,  Persians,  Kurds,  Arabians,  and  Israelites 
also,  we  do  not  fall  in  with  such  stories;  and  we  meet  as  little 
with  the  graves  of  giants  among  those  nations  as  among  the 
Trojans,  the  Homeric  Lsestrygones  of  the  south,  or  the  Huns 
of  the  north. 

The  Rephaim  or  giants,  the  sons  of  Anak  as  they  are  called 
in  the  earliest1  narratives,  seem  to  have  been  a  race  of  men  of 
much  larger  proportions  than  the  Hebrews,  who,  like  the  Arabs 
of  the  present  day,  were  probably  small  in  stature  (Num.  xiii. 
33).  In  one  of  the  oldest  biblical  narratives,  that  of  Checlor- 
laomer’s  overthrow"  at  the  time  of  Abraham,  and  his  repulse 
to  the  south  as  far  as  Mount  Seir  and  the  desert  of  Paran,  we 
are  told  that  this  Syrian  king  slew  the  Rephaim  at  Ashtaroth 
Karnaim,  the  Zuzims  at  Ham,  and  the  Emims  at  Kiriathaim; 
the  two  last  being  probably  subdivisions  of  the  first  (Gen.  xiv. 
3-6).  The  Emims  are  probably  that  strong  and  high-spirited 
people  who  had  inhabited  that  region  before  the  time  of  Lot, 
and  had  been  so  called  by  the  Moabites.  After  they  were  sub¬ 
dued  their  country  was  called  the  land  of  Moab  (Deut.  ii.  10, 
11).  The  Zamzummims — that  is,  the  men  of  evil  counsel  (Deut. 
ii.  20) — are  probably  the  same  as  the  Zuzims,  for  they  lived  in 
the  same  region,  between  the  rivers  Jabbok  and  Arnon,  and, 
like  the  Emims,  were  a  powerful  tribe,  as  were  the  Anakims, 
who  had  previously  lived  in  the  country,  and  been  conquered 
and  robbed  of  their  territory. 

This  story,  which  dates  from  an  exceedingly  ancient  period, 

1  Keil,  Commentar  iiber  d.  Buck  Josua ,  pp.  229-231. 


1  oo 
J  o  1 

appears  to  rest  on  at  least  this  basis  of  truth,  that  in  this  same 
district  north  of  the  Jabbok  in  Bashan,  king  Og — that  is,  Long- 
neck — who  lived  at  Ashtaroth,  is  spoken  of  as  the  last  king  of 
the  race  of  giants.1  His  iron  bed,  corresponding  to  his  size, 
was  exhibited  as  a  memorial  of  him  at  Babbath  (Dent.  iii.  11), 
possibly  a  basaltic  sarcophagus2  like  those  which  are  still  to  be 
seen  in  the  country, — Noah’s  in  the  Lebanon,  Nimrod’s  at 
Damascus,  Hosea’s  at  Szalt,  and  Aaron’s  on  Mount  Hor. 

Yet  it  by  no  means  follows,  from  the  existence  of  these 
giants,  that  the  Canaanitic  tribes  were  in  any  way  related  to 
them,  or  resembled  them  in  stature:  there  is  no  mention  made 
anywhere  of  Amoritic  giants. 

There  are  traces  of  the  existence  of  Bephaim  on  the  west 
side  of  the  Jordan;  and  it  is  possible  that  the  valley  of  Bephaim, 
west  of  Jerusalem,  bounded  on  the  north  by  the  rocky  valley 
of  Hinnom  (Josh.  xv.  8),  received  its  name  from  them  at  a 
very  early  period.3  Yet  what  we  know  of  them  is  mostly 
mythical;  they  are  connected  in  the  Septuagint  and  in  Josephus 
in  a  general  way  with  Titans  and  with  giants.  According  to 
Joshua,  they  withdrew  north  of  Mount  Ephraim,  among  the 
Perizzites  (Josh.  xvii.  15).  Three  of  them  were  named  as  sons 
of  Anak,  and  as  living  at  Hebron.  Their  ancestor  Arba,  the 
greatest  of  his  race,  had  once  given  his  name,  Kiriath  Arba,  or 
the  city  of  Arba,  to  Hebron  (Josh.  xiv.  15) ;4  yet  it  was  but  a 
temporary  appellation:  it  appeared  subsequently  at  the  time  of 
Abraham,  and  disappeared  at  the  time  of  Joshua,  when  the 
three  sons  of  Anak  were  driven  from  Hebron  by  Caleb  (Josh, 
xv.  14). 

It  still  remains  a  subject  of  dispute,  whether  that  almost 
unknown  and  only  fragmentary  mentioned  race  of  Anakim — 
always  designated  as  the  sons  of  Anak,  which,  as  dwellers  in 
cities,  may  be  held  to  have  been  among  the  earliest  inhabitants 
of  the  land,  and  to  be  reckoned  in  the  same  category  with  the 
nomadic  Perizzites,  who  were  driven  out  at  the  same  time — is 
to  be  considered  as  Canaanitish  in  its  character;  or  whether  it 

1  Yon  Lengerke,  Kenaan ,  p.  181  et  sq. 

2  Burckhardt,  Reise ,  Gesenius’  ed.  i.  42,  101,  ii.  600,  716. 

3  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  i.  219. 

4  Keil,  Commentary  on  Joshua ,  Judges ,  and  Ruth ,  p.  150,  Edin.  1864; 
Evvald,  Gesch.  i.  p.  276. 



is  not,  with  a  higher  degree  of  probability,  to  be  held  as  a  still 
more  ancient  race,  holding  the  country  prior  to  its  possession 
by  the  tribes  with  whom  the  Israelites  came  mainly  in  conflict.1 
But  this  is  certain,  that  it  was  a  tribe  of  very  tall  and  imposing 
men,  filling  the  hearts  of  the  Hebrews  with  a  causeless  fear; 
for  they  were  not  so  dangerous  as  they  seemed,  and  were  con¬ 
quered  by  Joshua,  and  compelled  to  take  refuge  among  the 
hostile  Philistines  along  the  sea-coast  at  the  south-west.  In 
the  time  of  Saul,  who  was  himself  a  man  of  gigantic  stature, 
and  David,  there  appeared  one  of  these  colossal  men,  Goliath, 
among  the  enemies  of  the  Israelites  (1  Sam.  xvii.  4).  In 
Josh.  xi.  21,  22,  we  read,  u  And  at  that  time  came  Joshua, 
and  cut  off  the  Anakims  from  the  mountains,  from  Hebron, 
from  Debir,  from  Anab,  and  from  all  the  mountains  of  Judah, 

and  from  all  the  mountains  of  Israel :  Joshua  destroyed  them 


utterly,  with  their  cities.  There  was  none  of  the  Anakims 
left  in  the  land  of  the  children  of  Israel:  only  in  Gaza,  in  Gath, 
and  in  Aslidod  there  remained.”  These  are  the  men  who,  at 
the  time  of  David,  entered  the  field  against  Israel  in  the  sefvice 
of  the  Philistines,  and  under  the  name  of  children  of  Rapha 
(2  Sam.  xxi.  15-22). 


This  tribe  is  spoken  of  only  twice  as  a  very  ancient  conquered 
people  (Deut.  ii.  23;  Josh.  xiii.  3),  who  lived  at  Hazarim,  and 
extended  as  far  as  to  Gaza,  but  who  were  early  exterminated 
by  the  Philistines.  Nothing  further  is  known  regarding  them. 
Among  the  cities  of  Benjamin,  Joshua  (xviii.  23)  speaks  of  one 
called  Avim. 


Very  little  more  has  come  down  to  us  about  the  Horites,  the 
neighbours  of  the  Canaanites  on  the  south-east,  and  who  dwelt 
in  the  mountains  of  Seir,  i.e.  hairy,  rough.  From  this  circum¬ 
stance  they  are  sometimes  called  Seirites;  for  their  designation 
Horites  seems  merely  to  signify  troglodytes,  since  they  built 
their  houses  in  the  clefts  of  the  rocks  (Obad.  3).  From  the 

1  Keil,  i.a.l.  pp.  229-231. 



mention  made  of  them  in  Gen.  xxxvi.  20,  they  seem  to  be  an 
independent  and  indigenous  tribe,  and  not  to  have  immigrated 
into  the  region  as  the  children  of  Israel  did  into  Palestine,  and 
as  the  sons  of  Esau  did  into  the  mountain  land  farther  south. 
It  was  here,  according  to  the  very  oldest  records — those  which 
date  from  the  time  of  Abraham — that  they  were  attacked  by 
Chedorlaomer  on  his  way  from  Elam,  after  he  had  conquered 
the  giants  on  the  east  bank  of  the  Jordan.  In  Gen.  xiv.  6  we 
read,  u  And  Chedorlaomer  smote  the  Horites  in  their  Mount 
Seir  unto  El-paran,  which  is  by  the  wilderness;  and  they  re¬ 
turned  and  came  unto  En-mishpat,  which  is  Kadesh.”  In  Gen. 
xxxvi.  20-29  the  names  are  given  of  the  sons  of  Seir  the  Horite, 
all  of  them  princes.  They  are — Lotan,  Shobal,  Zibeon,  Anah, 
Dishon,  Ezer,  and  Dishan ;  the  name  of  the  second  is  pre¬ 
served  in  the  designation  Syria  Shobal.  The  son  of  the  seventh 
was  called  Uz,  a  name  which  is  familiar  to  us  from  its  con¬ 
nection  with  the  book  of  Job.1  The  Mosaic  document  which 
relates  the  lineage  of  these  Edomite  princes  must  be  the  most 
ancient  record  of  that  mountain  people;  for  in  Deut.  ii.  12 
we  find  this  allusion,  u  The  IJorims  also  dwelt  in  Seir  before¬ 
time,  but  the  children  of  Esau  succeeded  them  when  they  had 
destroyed  them  from  before  them,  and  dwelt  in  their  stead :  as 
Israel  did  unto  the  land  of  his  possession  which  the  Lord  gave 
unto  them.”  Whether  in  the  book  of  Job  (xxiv.  5-9)  the  de¬ 
pressed  condition  of  these  Horites  or  IJorims  is  pictured  in 
terms  which  would  describe  the  status  of  Indian  pariahs  or  a 
tribe  of  gypsies,  as  Ewald2  has  conjectured,  is  uncertain;  but 
von  Raumer3  has  very  successfully  shown  the  remarkable  con¬ 
nection  between  Edom  and  Uz,  in  his  comments  on  Lam.  iv. 
21,  u  Rejoice  and  be  glad,  O  daughter  of  Edom,  that  dwellest 
in  the  land  of  Uz.”  But  of  this  I  shall  speak  more  fully  in  a 
subsequent  place. 

1  Onomast.  Euseb.  s.v.  Idumsea ;  Reland,  Pal.  p.  72. 

2  Ewald,  Gescli.  i.  pp.  273,  274;  TYiner,  i.a.l.  Horites ,  i.  512;  comp, 
v.  Lengerke,  Kenaan ,  p.  184. 

3  K.  v.  Raumer,  Das  ostliche  Paldstina  and  das  Land  Edom,  in  Bergh. 
Annalen  1830,  vol.  i.  p.  563,  etc. 




Esau,  the  son  of  Isaac,  the  first-born  twin-brother  of  Jacob, 
is  best  known  by  the  name  Edom,  the  red,  and  in  connection 
with  his  descendants  the  Edomites,  who  settled  in  Mount  Seir, 
and  drove  out  the  Horims,  who  had  dwelt  there  before.  This 
ethnographical  name  is  the  one  distinctively  given  in  the  Old 
Testament  to  the  race  of  Esau ;  for  in  Gen.  xxxvi.  9  we  read, 
u  These  are  the  generations  of  Esau,  the  father  of  the  Edomites, 
in  Mount  Seir.”  His  marrying  into  various  Canaanite  tribes, 
whom  his  parents  esteemed  as  heathen,  his  withdrawal  from 
Canaan  when  there  was  no  longer  room  for  his  flocks  as  well 
as  those  of  Jacob  to  subsist  in  the  same  country,  the  well-known 
enmity  between  the  two  brothers,  and  the  mistrust  which  per¬ 
petuated  itself  in  the  next  generation,  affected  for  centuries  the 
destiny  of  those  two  neighbouring  but  never  allied  nations,  the 
Edomites  and  the  Jews,  and  resulted  at  last  in  a  settled  national 
hatred  (Deut.  ii.  4,  8). 

At  the  first  Edom  must  have  pastured  his  flocks  and  herds 
just  on  the  southern  confines  of  Canaan,  where,  at  the  time  of 
Joshua,  the  borders  of  the  two  countries  met  (Josh.  xv.  1);  and 
that  northern  position  must  have  been  the  one  early  occupied, 
since  the  Horites  were  the  prior  possessors  of  Mount  Seir,  and 
the  Amorites  held  the  southern  portion  of  the  Dead  Sea  (Gen. 
xiv.  6,  7).  The  Edomites,  at  a  later  period,  forced  their  way 
south-eastward  into  the  mountain  region  of  the  Horites,  or 
Horims,  where  they  found  a  more  advantageous  dwelling-place, 
and  at  last  became  lords  of  the  whole  territory.  They  were 
dwelling  there  at  the  time  that  Moses  passed  nortlnvard  with 
the  children  of  Israel  to  Ivadesh-Barnea  at  the  north-west, 
where  the  desert  of  Zin,  which  lay  north  of  Paran  and  Edom, 
terminated.  Kadesh,  we  are  told  in  Hum.  xx.  16,  was  the  city 
on  the  northern  frontier  of  Edom,  and  in  its  neighbourhood 
the  old  name  of  the  mountain  (“  Serr”)  is  still  found  in  use 
among  the  Beduins.  In  consequence  of  the  refusal  which  the 

1  H.  Eelandi,  Pal.  cxii.  de  regione  Edom ,  pp.  66-73.  Gesenius,  GescJi. 
der  Edomiter ,  in  Comm,  to  Isaiah ,  Pt.  i.  Leipzig  1821,  pp.  904-913  ;  ii.  p. 
261.  Eosenmiiller,  Bill.  Alterthumsk.  iii.  pp.  65-77 ;  Winer,  Edom ,  i.  p. 
292 ;  K.  v.  Raumer,  i.a.l.  i.  pp.  553-566 ;  E.  Robinson,  Bib.  Research. 
ii.  pp.  108-116. 



Edomites  gave  to  the  passage  of  Israel  through  their  territory, 
Moses  was  obliged  to  turn  back  again  to  the  ^Elanitic  Gulf, 
to  make  a  circuit  round  the  Seir  range,  and  to  pass  into  the 
district  of  Moab  from  the  east  (Deut.  ii.  1,  8).  The  Seir  range, 
which  was  in  the  possession  of  the  Edomites,  extended  from 
the  Dead  Sea  to  the  eastern  arm  of  the  Red  Sea ;  for  the  Seir 
of  the  Bible,  with  which  the  subsequent  Mohammedan  name, 
Jebel  Shera,  is  allied,  embraced  a  far  larger  tract  of  territory 
than  that  which  was  embraced  by  the  word  Seir  as  used  by 
Arabian  writers,  who  meant,  when  they  used  the  word,  only 
a  subordinate  part  of  the  whole  country  to  which  the  bibli¬ 
cal  writers  refer  under  the  name  of  Seir.  It  is  now  a  well- 
settled  fact,  too,  that  the  Arabic  word  Shera,  i.e.  extent  of 
land,  has  only  the  accidental  resemblance  of  sound  to  the  name 
Seir,  and  cannot  be  considered  identical  with  it  or  traced  back 
to  it.  Sherak  and  Alsherak  are  the  names  given  at  the  present 
time  to  the  mountains  north  of  Edom,  and  near  Kerak :  the 
brook  el-Hassa,  or  Ashy,  was  the  southern  boundary  of  Moab, 
where  the  land  of  Edom  began,  and  the  region  from  that  point 
on  has  taken  the  usual  name  of  Jebal  (Gabalitis).  South  of 
Wadi  Ghoeir,  the  country  is  generally  called  Jebel  Shera, 
extending  as  far  as  Tor  Hesmah,  and  passing  Petra.  At  the 
time  of  Moses,  the  power  of  Edom  must  have  extended  far  to 
the  south,  and  to  the  neighbourhood  of  the  Red  Sea :  for  we 
read  in  Deut.  ii,  4,  8,  that  Israel  was  obliged  to  pass  by  the  head 
of  that  sea;  and  as  this  way  could  easily  be  closed  against  them, 
the  injunction  was  especially  valuable,  that  they  should  u  take 
good  heed  unto  themselves.” 

At  the  time  of  the  transit  of  the  Israelites,  the  heads  of 
Edomite  families  had  been  made  kings;  and  we  learn  from  Gen. 
xxxvi.  31-43,  that  they  had  reigned  in  this  country  long  before 
kings  had  been  appointed  in  Israel.  By  this  are  not  meant 
hereditary  rulers  of  the  same  dynasty;  but  they  appear  to  be 
princes  chosen  by  lot,  since  the  eight  who  are  mentioned  by 
name  appear  to  have  come  from  entirely  different  families  and 
from  entirely  different  places  :  compare  1  Chr.  i.  43-54.  Their 
names  were  Bela,  the  son  of  Beor;  the  name  of  his  city  was 
Dinhabbah  :  after  him  came  Jobab,  a  son  of  Berah  of  Bozrah: 
in  his  place  Husham  of  the  land  of  the  Temanites :  after  him 
Hadad,  a  son  of  Bedad,  who  conquered  the  Midianites  in  Moab ; 



his  city  was  named  Avith:  after  him  came  Samlah  of  Masrekah : 

then  Saul  of  Rehoboth  by  the  river:  after  he  died,  Baalhanan 
the  son  of  Achbor  reigned ;  and  then  king  Ilador,  whose  city 
was  called  Pai.  Then  follows  a  list  containing  eleven  other 
names  of  Edomite  princes,  mentioned  without  any  specification, 
excepting  that  they  lived  each  in  his  own  domain;  whence  the 
conjecture  seems  plausible,  that  there  was  at  that  time  a  party 
of  the  Edomites  living  towards  the  north-east,  who  had  connected 
themselves  with  the  chief  princes1  descended  from  Esau,  and 
had  remained  in  possession  of  Seir. 

Almost  nothing  is  known  regarding  the  cities  ruled  over  by 
the  above-mentioned  Edomite  princes.  Dinhabbah  we  do  not 
know  at  all,  if  it  be  not  one'2  of  two  places  mentioned  by  Eusebius 
under  the  name  Dannaba,  one  of  which  was  eight  Roman  miles 
from  Areopolis,  as  one  goes  towards  the  Arnon. 

Bozrah,  in  Edom — a  place  whose  name  has  been  written 
variously,  Eusebius  giving  it  as  Bosor,  but  whose  real  position 
had  never  been  known — has  been  confounded  very  often  with 
the  Bostra  of  the  Greeks  and  Romans,  in  the  plain  of  Moab.  Its 
location  was  discovered  by  Burcldiardt  to  be  that  of  the  modern 
Bussira;  and  it  is  supposed  by  von  Raumer,3  on  satisfactory 
grounds,  to  have  been  the  place  figuratively  called  the  Rocky 
Nest  of  the  Edomite  eagle.  It  was  afterwards  visited  by 
Robinson,  and  identified  almost  beyond  the  chance  of  mistake. 

Teman,  unquestionably  near  the  well-known  caravan  station 
of  Maan,  east  of  Petra,  but  not  identical  with  it,  as  Colonel 
Leake  supposed,  belonged  to  the  Temanites,  whose  seat  seems 
to  have  been  around  the  present  Petra,  in  the  very  centre  of 
Edom.  Teman  was  celebrated  throughout  that  whole  region 

o  o 

for  the  wisdom  of  its  inhabitants.  It  was  praised  by  the  pro¬ 
phets  Isaiah  and  Jeremiah,  and  some  idea  of  its  character  can 
be  gained  from  the  words  of  Eliphaz  the  Temanite  in  the  book 
of  Job.4  Whether  Shuak,  Burckhardt’s  Szyhham,  is  the 
city  of  Bildad  the  Shuhite,  as  Raumer  suspects,  must  be  left 
undetermined,  although  these  ruins  lie  in  the  land  of  Edom. 
Naamah,  the  home  of  Zophar,  is  wholly  unknown ;  nor  can 

1  Rosenmuller,  Bill.  Alterth.  iii.  pp.  C9-71. 

2  AViner,  i.  p.  270. 

3  K.  v.  Raumer,  Das  osiliche  Paliist.  i.a.l.  i.  p.  565. 

4  Gesenius,  Comm,  zu  Jesaias ,  ii.  674. 



Buz,  tlie  city  of  Eliliu,  be  identified  on  strict  grammatical  prin¬ 
ciples  with  Bosta,1  south  of  Petra,  or  with  the  more  northern 
Bosor,  or  Bozrah.  Avith,  the  home  of  Hadad,  is  entirely 
unknown  to  us,  as  also  is  Pai.  Whether  Rehoboth  by  the 
river,  the  home  of  the  Edomite  Saul,  was  the  Rehoboth  of  the 
Euphrates,  or  the  Errachaby  of  Rauwolf  near  the  mouth  of 
the  Chaboras,  can  only  be  determined  by  knowing  whether  this 
king  came  from  a  region  outside  of  Edom ;  for  the  domain  of 
Edom  never  extended  at  that  early  date  to  the  Euphrates.2 
The  location  of  Masrekah,  the  city  of  Samlah,  is  unknown, 
although  Eusebius  cites  the  name  of  a  city  in  Gebalene  under 
the  name  Masreca.  Among  the  best  known  of  the  cities  of 
Edom,  although  not  becoming  eminent  till  in  the  later  wars  of 
the  kings  of  Judah,  are  Selah  (Joktheel),  or  Petra  (2  Kings 
xiv.  7;  2  Chron.  xxv.  11-14);  Wadi  Musa,  and  the  harbours 
of  Elath  and  Ezion-geber.  By  the  want  of  any  history  of  their 
own,  the  Edomites  are  lost  in  obscurity  during  the  successive 
centuries,  and  we  obtain  only  the  most  casual  glimpses  of  them 
during  their  wars  with  Judah  and  Israel.  Saul,  the  first  of 
the  Hebrew  kings,  waged  war  with  the  Edomites,  and  slew  a 
number  of  that  race,  who  had  pillaged  a  portion  of  his  territory 
(1  Sam.  xiv.  47)  ;  king  David  smote  the  Edomites  in  the 
Valley  of  Salt  (1  Chron.  xviii.  12),  and  gained  so  complete  a 
victory  over  them,  that  he  took  possession  of  their  cities ;  and 
Solomon  employed  Elath  and  Ezion-geber  as  the  ports  whence 
to  send  his  fleets  to  Ophir.  The  effort  of  one  of  the  Edomite 
princes,  who,  while  a  mere  boy,  had  fled  to  Egypt  during  the 
reign  of  David,  been  received  with  honour  at  the  court  of 
Pharaoh,  and  returned  during  the  reign  of  Solomon  powerfully 
supported  to  re-establish  the  dominion  of  Edom  (1  Kings  xi. 
14-22),  was  only  transitory,  and  without  results;  for  in  the  year 
914  B.C.,  when  the  second  fleet  was  built  by  king  Jehoshaphat 
in  the  harbour  of  Ezion-geber,  wre  read  expressly,  “And  there 
was  then  no  king  in  Edom.” 

The  reception  of  Hadad  in  Egypt,  the  honour  paid  him  by 
Pharaoh  in  giving  him  the  queen’s  sister  as  his  wife,  and  in 

1  K.  v.  Raumer,  Pal.  p.  273 ;  Winer,  Bibl.  Bealw.  i.  p.  205. 

2  Rosenmiiller,  Bill.  Alterth.  i.  p.  270,  and  Note,  p.  313 ;  Winer,  ii.  p. 
308,  Reclioboth  hannabar.  hi  Notitia  Dignitatum ,  ed.  Bucking,  cap.  xxix. 
ad  p.  78,  Note  17,  ad  p.  346,  is  unfortunately  defective. 



educating  his  children  as  of  equal  rank  with  his  own,  show  the 
importance  of  Edom  in  the  eyes  of  its  powerful  neighbours. 
Although,  soon  after  this,  Jehoram  king  of  Israel,  and  Jeho- 
shaphat  king  of  Judah,  in  the  course  of  their  war  against  the 
rebellious  king  of  Moab,  were  compelled  to  take  their  course 
through  the  desert  of  Edom,  and  form  an  alliance  with  the  king 
of  that  country ;  yet  the  latter  was  probably  a  mere  deputy,  or 
a  real  vassal,  bearing  the  name  of  the  king  (2  Kings  iii.  9). 

Under  the  son  of  Jehoshaphat,  Joram  king  of  Judah,  the 
Edomites  revolted  utterly,  and  chose  for  themselves  a  king  (2 
Kings  viii.  20-22)  ;  after  that  time  they  remained  in  Selah  or 
Petra  (2  Kings  xiv.  7),  till  after  Amaziah  attacked  them,  and 
Uzziah  rebuilt  Elatli  (2  Cliron.  xxvi.  2),  and  Kezin  king  of 
Syria  had  driven  all  the  Jews  out  of  the  last-named  port  (2 
Kings  xvi.  6).  From  that  period  they  were  wholly  freed  from 
the  attacks  of  their  now  weakened  northern  neighbours. 

The  Old  Testament  is  from  this  time  silent  regarding  the 
Edomites  ;  but  in  consequence  of  the  downfall  of  the  kingdom 
of  Judah,  Edom  must,  as  we  gather  from  some  hints  in  the 
prophetic  writings,  have  extended  its  borders  farther  towards 
the  east  and  north1  than  ever  before.  At  the  destruction  of 
Jerusalem  the  Edomites  were  enabled  to  obtain  vengeance  for 
their  former  subjection.  They  leagued  themselves  with  the 
Chaldeans  under  Nebuchadnezzar,  and,  in  sympathy  with  the 
powerful  Syrians,  they  rejoiced  with  songs  of  triumph  over 
the  downfall  of  Judah  (Ezek.  xxv.  8-14).  The  domination  of 
the  Chaldeans,  however,  swept  away  the  Edomites  too  in  its 
course  (Jer.  xxvii.  3). 

Although  they  appear  thereafter  in  connection  with  wars,  yet 
they  no  longer  are  an  independent  people.  The  unextinguish- 
able  hatred  of  the  Hebrews  rested  more  heavily  upon  this 
nation  of  kindred  stock,  than  it  did  upon  the  Chaldeans  them¬ 
selves.  In  the  cursings  poured  out  upon  Babylon,  Edom  is 
seldom2  forgotten  (Ps.  cxxxvii.  7-9)  ;  and  all  the  prophets 
struggle  for  pre-eminence,  as  it  were,  in  hurling  their  evil  wishes 
against  it.  During  the  captivity,  and  after  it,  as  well  as  in  the 
time  of  the  Maccabees,  the  Edomites  pressed  up  into  Palestine 
as  far  as  to  Hebron ;  and  it  is  natural  that  an  Edomite  should 

1  Gesenius,  i.a.l.  Comm.  i.  906. 

2  Gesenius,  i.a.l.  i.  pp.  907,  911,  912,  ii.  p.  261. 



seem  to  the  embittered  Hebrews  a  representative  of  natural 
hatred,  and  that  the  prophets  should  have  made  the  judgments 
of  Jehovah  upon  the  wicked  synonymous  with  His  judgments 
upon  Edom  (Isa.  lxiii.). 

During  the  period  in  which  the  history  of  the  ancient 
Edomites  is  hid  from  us  in  entire  obscurity,  there  begins  to 
be  developed  within  the  rocky  fastnesses  which  had  protected 
them  another  great  power,  that  of  the  peaceful  Nabathseans, 
whom  the  successors  of  Alexander,  Antigonus,  and  Demetrius 
tried  in  vain  to  drive  from  Petra,  their  central  stronghold.  It 
is  hardly  a  matter  of  doubt  that  the  rude  Edomites  were  driven 
from  their  old  home  by  the  Nabathseans,  or  at  least  compelled 
to  do  menial  service  in  behalf  of  this  great  commercial  people, 
while  Petra  rose,  under  its  Meleks  and  Obodas,  to  independence, 
and  to  a  splendour  which  roused  the  jealousy  even  of  the 
Pomans.  The  Nabathseans  had  no  share  in  the  hostile  under¬ 
takings  of  the  Edomites,  and  entered  into  close  alliance  with 
Palestine  as  little  as  with  Phoenicia,  and  accepted  only  at  a  late 
period  in  their  history  the  proffered  friendship  of  the  Poman 

Contemporaneously  with  the  rise  of  the  power  of  the 

Nabathseans,  i.e.  in  the  time  of  the  Maccabees,  the  second 

century  before  Christ,  the  custom  arose  among  historians  of 

designating  the  northern  Edomites,  many  of  whom  had  settled 

in  Judah,  by  the  term  Idumseans,  and  their  country  Idumsea. 

This  name  was  used  by  Josephus  even,  and  was  in  general 

use  among  the  Pomans,  who,  in  fact,  applied  it  to  the  whole 

of  Judsea.  The  Idumseans  proper  were  subdued  by  John 

Ilyrcanus,  120  B.C.,  and  were  only  permitted  to  remain  in  the 

country  on  condition  of  being  circumcised.  He  hoped  by  this 

to  incorporate  them  into  the  Jewish  people,  and  he  even  placed 

Jewish  rulers  over  them  ;  but  the  old  national  hatred  was  by 


no  means  lessened. 

Antipater,  one  of  these  prefects  who  were  set  over  the 
Idumseans,  took  advantage  of  the  internal  dissensions  of  the 
Maccabsean  kings,  and  of  the  Poman  influence,  to  strengthen 
his  own  power ;  and  his  son  Herod  is  well  known  in  history  as 
the  first  king  of  the  Idumsean  dynasty  who  took  the  place  of 
the  Edomite  archon.  How  little  the  hatred  and  the  desire  of 
revenge  existing  among  the  Idumseans  against  the  Jews  had 



been  extinguished,  is  shown  shortly  before  the  siege  and  capture 
of  Jerusalem  by  Titus,  when  the  party  of  Zealots  summoned 
20,000  Idumseans  into  the  city  to  plunder  and  murder  the 
party  opposed  to  them ;  and  this  great  army  of  robbers  made 
good  their  escape  before  the  Romans  had  attacked  the  place. 

Subsequently  to  that  time  we  have  more  mention  of 
Edomites,  or  of  Idumseans ;  and  the  names  Gebalene,  Palsestina 
Tertia,  Arabia  Petrsea,  and  others,  come  into  more  frequent 
use  to  designate  the  region.  The  old  land  of  Edom  is  utterly 
forgotten,  and  the  Idumseans,  with  so  many  other  tribes  of  that 
early  time,  are  lost  in  the  ocean  of  Arabs  and  Saracens. 


This  tribe  is  spoken  of  by  Balaam  as  one  of  the  oldest  in 
the  world  (Num.  xxiv.  20)  :  u  Amalek  was  the  first  of  the 
nations  ;  but  his  latter  end  shall  be,  that  he  shall  perish  for 
ever,” — a  passage  which  briefly  characterizes  the  wdiole  history 
of  the  Amalekites.  According  to  Gen.  xxxvi.  12,  they  are  of 
Edomitic  origin,  descending  from  Amalek,  a  grandson  of  Esau, 
although  this  statement  does  not  seem  to  agree  with  the  account 
in  Gen.  xiv.  7,  according  to  which  Chedorlaomer,  after  attacking 
the  Horites  in  Mount  Seir  at  the  time  of  Abraham,  turned 
northward  towards  Kadesh,  and  smote  the  whole  land  of  the 
Amalekites,  and  also  overcame  the  Amorites,  who  were  then 
dwelling  at  Hazazon  Tamar  (Engedi).  This  account  har¬ 
monizes  better  with  the  statement  of  the  great  antiquity  of  the 
Amalekite  tribe,  and  also  with  the  earliest  Arabian  records 
(though  relatively  very  modern),  which  speak  of  an  Amlaq  or 
Amleq,  a  son  of  Aad,  and  a  grandson  of  Chan,  and  ascribe  to  his 
very  ancient  family  a  residence  at  Jaman,  but  later  a  violent 
invasion  northward.  This  race  belongs,  therefore,  to  that  South 
Arabian  stock  which  has  no  affinity  with  Abraham,  as  sons  of 
Ham  or  Joktan  (Gen.  x.  7,  26-30).  Gesenius  held  them  to 
be  connected  with  the  Canaanites  and  the  Carthaginians,  of 
the  latter  of  whom  the  Arabians  used  to  say  that  they  were  an 

1  H.  Reland,  Pal.  cxiv.  de  Amalacitide ,  78-82;  Gesenius,  Amalikiter,  in 
Ersch’s  Encijcl.  Pt.  iii.  p.  301  et  sq.  ;  Rosenmiiller,  i.a.l.  iii.  pp.  90-94  ; 
Ewald,  Gesch.  i.  299,  300  ;  Winer,  Bill.  Realw.  i.  p.  51 ;  J.  Lengerke, 
Kenaan ,  pp.  200-207. 



Amalekite  colony  in  North  Africa.  Reland  has  noticed  it  as  a 
remarkable  fact,  that  during  the  wandering  of  the  Israelites 
through  the  Peninsula,  the  two  nations,  the  Edomites  and  the 
Amalekites,  are  always  spoken  of  in  different  terms;  the  latter 
being  invariably  alluded  to  as  a  natural  enemy,  the  former  as 
a  race  hostile  to  the  Israelites  indeed,  but  connected  with  it  by 
old  ties  of  blood. 

From  the  oldest  records  it  is  determined,  with  a  great  deal 
of  certainty,  that  the  oldest  dwelling-place  of  the  Amalekites 
was  between  Seir  and  Engaddi,  and  therefore  on  the  south¬ 
west  side  of  the  Dead  Sea  ;  but  according  to  1  Sam.  xv.  7,  their 
country  had  become  much  more  extensive,  and  reached  to  the 
Egyptian  frontier;  for  Saul  smote  them  u  from  Havilah  until 
thou  comest  to  Shur,  that  is  over  against  Egypt.”  This 
Havilah  is  unknown1  to  us,  though  it  must  be  looked  for  in  the 
southern  part  of  Judaea,  although  we  have  exactly  the  same 
expression  just  quoted  applied  to  the  dwelling-place  of  Ishmael, 
whose  Havilah  must  be  located  farther  eastward.  Sur,  or  more 
correctly  Sliur,  on  the  contrary,  the  desert  on  the  way  to 
Egypt  into  which  Hagar  was  driven  (Gen.  xvi.  7),  and  where 
Abraham  dwelt  (Gen.  xxv.  18),  is  the  Desert  el  Jesar  of  the 
Arabs,  and  the  real  Egyptian  boundary;  and  Josephus  could 
say  with  perfect  truth,  that  the  Amalekite  territory  extended 
from  Pelusium  to  the  Red  Sea.  Samuel  says,  in  express 
confirmation  of  the  great  antiquity  of  the  tribe,  that  the 
“  Geshurites,  and  the  Gezrites,  and  the  Amalekites,  were  of  old 
the  inhabitants  of  the  land  as  thou  goest  to  Shur,  even  unto 
the  land  of  Egypt.” 

We  can  now  understand  how  it  was  that  this  ancient  and 
powerful  tribe  was  the  first  to  attack  the  Israelites  at  Replii- 
dim,  on  their  way  through  the  wilderness  ;  in  which  they  wTere 
not  the  conquerors,  however,  but  were  overcome  by  Joshua 
(Ex.  xvii.  8-13).  Soon  after  that  event,  however,  Israel  was 
again  attacked  by  the  same  tribe,  which  had  allied  itself  with 
the  Canaanites  along  the  southern  border  of  Palestine  ;  and 
this  time  the  united  forces  were  successful,  and  the  Hebrews 
were  driven  back  from  the  hills  of  Arad  as  far  as  Hormah 
(Num.  xiv.  45).  They  formed,  therefore,  a  powerful  popula¬ 
tion  in  the  southern  part  of  Canaan  at  a  very  early  date,  and 

1  Rosenmiiller,  Bill.  Arch.  iii.  p.  157. 



extended  westward  as  far  as  to  the  territory  of  the  Philistines, 
where  David  overcame  them  (1  Sam.  xxvii.  8).  They  even 
reached  as  far  as  to  Gaza,  and  in  conjunction  with  the 
Midianites,  became  so  numerous,  that  u  they  came  as  grass¬ 
hoppers  for  multitude.”  The  extreme  eastern  border  of  their 
territory,  in  which  they  are  once  named  in  conjunction  with 
the  children  of  Ammon,  was  Jericho,  the  city  of  palms,  on  the 
lower  Jordan  (Judg.  iii.  13).  According  to  the  statement  of 
Josephus  ( Antiq .  ix.  9),  the  Amalekites  joined  the  Edomites 
and  the  Gabalites  in  their  war  against  Amaziah  king  of  Judah, 
and  were  conquered  in  the  Valley  of  Salt :  yet  in  the  accounts 
of  2  Kings  xiv.  7,  and  2  Chron.  xxv.  11,  there  is  mention  only 
of  the  Edomites.  Uzziah  the  son  of  Amaziah  is  thought  by 
Ewald  to  have  continued  the  war  against  them  (1  Chron.  xxvi.). 

These  Amalekites,  although  they  may  have  been  at  a  very 
early  period  a  very  powerful  nation,  of  settled  habits  of  life, 
five  hundred  years  after  the  time  of  Abraham,  and  during  the 
life  of  Moses,  were  evidently  a  nomadic  tribe,  having  all  the 
ways  and  habits  of  wanderers.  It  seems  probable  that,  after 
being  driven  from  their  central  home  in  the  Valley  of  Bephi- 
dim  (the  modern  Feiran),  they  were  compelled  to  adopt  new 
modes  of  life ;  and  being  too  weak  to  attack  Israel  singly,  that 
they  allied  themselves  with  other  powerful  tribes,  and  swept 
from  place  to  place,  as  the  Beduins  do  now,  with  no  central 
spot  to  call  their  capital,  and  with  no  attachment  to  any  special 
place.  One  of  their  kings,  Agag,  fell  into  the  hands  of  Saul, 
taken  in  the  very  act  of  sacking  and  plundering  the  country 
along  the  Egyptian  frontier.  They  were  looked  upon  as  a  race 
of  robbers  (1  Sam.  xv.  2-7)  ;  and  it  was  thought  right  in  the 
time  of  David  and  Saul  to  exterminate  every  man,  woman,  and 
child  of  the  race.  It  was  even  laid  as  a  great  reproach  on  the 
good  name  of  the  latter,  that  he  had  showed  any  mercy  to 
them  ;  and  in  Samuel  that  tenderness  is  mentioned  as  u  evil  in 
the  sight  of  the  Lord.” 

After  the  Amalekites  had  sacked  Ziklag,  a  city  on  the 
southern  border  of  Canaan,  and  had  taken  away  every  valuable 
thing,  in  revenge  for  their  own  former  troubles  at  the  hand  of 
the  Israelites,  and  had  even  taken  captive  David’s  wives,  they 
were  pursued  by  six  hundred  men  of  war,  and  utterly  routed 
near  the  brook  Besor  (?)  while  they  were  indulging  in  their 



revelry.  Only  four  hundred  escaped,  fleeing  on  camels  (1  Sam. 
xxx.  1-22). 

After  David  had  entirely  subjected  the  country  of  Edom, 
there  is  no  more  mention  of  the  Amalekites.  Only  once  again, 
under  Hezekiah,  is  there  an  allusion  to  a  remnant  of  the  tribe 
living  in  Mount  Seir.  In  central  Palestine,  at  the  time  of  the 
judges,  there  is  a  trace  of  their  name;  for  we  read  of  a  moun¬ 
tain  district  in  Ephraim  possessed  by  the  Amalekites,  in  which 
one  of  the  judges  of  Israel,  Abdon  the  son  of  Hillel,  a  Pira- 
thonite,  was  buried  (Judg.  xii.  15).  Nothing  further  is  known 
of  this  branch  of  the  tribe;  but  even  this  explains  the  passage 
in  the  song  of  Barak  and  Deborah,  “  Out  of  Ephraim  was  there 
a  root  of  them  against  Amalek.”  There  is  no  city  of  Amalekites 
mentioned  in  the  very  oldest  records  (Gen.  xxxvi.  12,  16), 
although  there  was  a  u  city  of  Amalek”  subsequently,  to  which 
Macrizi  alludes,  and  which,  I  think,  must  be  identified  with 
the  Ptolemaic  Pharan. 


Kenaz,  the  founder  of  this  tribe,  and  Amalek,  are  named 
as  brothers,  grandsons  of  Esau,  sons  of  Eliphaz,  but  by  different 
mothers  (Gen.  xxxvi.  11,  12).  The  Kenites1  are  spoken  of  in 
another  passage  as  of  equally  great  antiquity  with  the  Amalek¬ 
ites  (Gen.  xv.  19,  21);  and  in  Saul’s  time  they  were  encamped, 
in  company  with  the  Amalekites,  in  the  desert  of  Shur  (1  Sam. 
xv.  2-7).  They  seem,  therefore,  to  have  been  a  small  tribe 
tributary  to  that  of  Amalek.  Yet  their  relations  with  the 
Israelites  were  far  from  hostile,  even  as  early  as  the  days  of 
Moses.  This  is  evident  from  the  request  which  Saul  made  to 
them  to  withdraw  from  the  Amalekites,  and  save  themselves 
the  slaughter  which  would  otherwise  have  engulphed  them  all. 

It  will  be  remembered  that  Moses,  after  his  withdrawing 
from  Egypt  into  the  land  of  Midian,  married  one  of  the  seven 
daughters  of  the  priest  of  Midian;  and  at  a  later  period,  when 
Pharaoh  his  persecutor  had  died  in  Egypt,  he  tended  the  sheep 
of  Jethro,  his  father-in-law,  at  the  mountain  of  Horeb  (Ex.  ii. 
15-22).  From  Judg.  i.  16,  compared  with  iv.  11,  it  appears 
that  the  father-in-law  of  Moses  was  really  a  Kenite;  for  his  son 

1  Rosenmuller,  i.a.l.  ii.  p.  250. 



Hobab,  the  brother-in-law  of  Moses,  and  his  immediate  connec¬ 
tions,  are  called  the  sons  of  the  Kenite,  and  are  spoken  of  as 
having  gone  out  from  Jericho  into  the  wilderness  of  Judah,  south 
of  the  city  of  Arad,  and  as  living  there  among  the  people  of 
Judah.  Another  Kenite,  Heber,  separated  himself  from  these 
sons  of  Hobab,  and  set  up  his  abode  at  the  oaks  of  Zaanaim, 
near  Kadesh. 

This  tributary  of  the  great  tribe  of  Amalek  was  therefore 
linked  by  old  ties  to  the  Jews,  and  mingled  freely  among  them, 
as  the  Midianites  had  formerly  done,  for  Midian  was  the  son 
of  Abraham  by  Keturah  (Gen.  xxv.  2).  It  may  therefore  be, 
that  although  the  Midianites  and  Amalekites  were  formerly 
bound  together  by  close  ties,  yet  that  now  they  were  separated 
from  each  other  by  the  interposition  of  Jethro  in  favour  of 
Israel.  The  Amalekites  lost  their  power;  the  Midianites,  re¬ 
moving  to  the  more  eastern  part  of  Arabia,  existed  for  many 
centuries ;  and  the  words  of  Saul  (1  Sam.  xv.  6)  were  well 
founded,  when  he  said  to  the  Kenites,  u  Go,  depart,  get  you  down 
from  among  the  Amalekites,  lest  I  destroy  you  with  them  :  for 
ye  showed  kindness  to  all  the  children  of  Israel  when  they  came 
up  out  of  Egypt.”  Jethro  had  welcomed  Moses  with  kindness, 
had  been  amazed  at  the  great  deeds  of  Jehovah,  and  the  won¬ 
derful  deliverance  of  Israel,  and  had  given  excellent  counsel 
regarding  the  government  of  the  people  (Ex.  xviii.).  He  had 
even  brought  an  offering  to  Jehovah,  the  highest  proof  of  a 
kindly  interest  that  he  could  offer,  and  one  which  was  subse¬ 
quently  renewed  by  the  kindly  offer  of  Hobab,  his  son,  to  con¬ 
duct  Israel  into  the  Promised  Land  (Num.  x.  29-33). 

In  the  very  early  connection  of  Moses  with  Jethro’s  house, 
in  the  blessing  given  by  Jethro  to  Moses,  and  on  other  grounds, 
Ewald1  finds  reasons  for  suspecting  an  old  alliance  between  the 
Kenites,  Midianites,  and  Israelites,  descended  as  they  all  were 
from  Abraham.  He  also  thinks  that,  during  the  journey  of 
Israel  through  the  Sinai  Peninsula,  these  three  tribes  were  so 
closely  thrown  together,  that  they  in  some  cases  constituted  but 
a  single  body.  This  would  explain  the  existence  of  so  great 
a  number  of  men  as  603,550,  the  number  of  the  Israelites, 
exclusive  of  women  and  children, — a  number  which  would  seem 
too  large  for  the  land  of  Goshen,  but  which  might  easily  be 
1  Ewald,  Gcsch.  ii.  p.  32  et  sq.,  and  i.  p.  450. 

YOL.  II. 




formed  around  Sinai  by  the  aggregation  of  kindred  tribes,  and 
which  would  be  needful  to  subjugate  a  land  so  thickly  peopled 
as  Canaan. 

From  the  last  mention  of  the  Kenites,  it  appears  that  they 
were  living  in  Judaea  on  terms  of  friendship  with  Israel,  and 
that,  like  the  Israelites,  they  had  gone  over  from  a  tent-life  to 
a  residence  in  builded  houses ;  and  when  David  had  conquered 
the  Amalekites  in  Ziklag,  he  sent  a  portion  of  the  booty  to  the 
cities  along  the  southern  frontier  that  were  friendly,  and  among 
them  to  the  cities  of  the  Kenites  (1  Sam.  xxx.  29). 

Not  all  the  Kenites,  however,  could  give  up  their  free  tent- 
life,  and  accustom  themselves  to  the  restraints  of  a  house  and 
the  culture  of  the  soil.  In  this  respect  they  were  not  unlike 
the  Beduins  of  to-day. 

Hundreds  of  years  before  the  time  of  the  prophet  Jeremiah, 
Jehonadab,  a  son  of  Rechab  (2  Kings  x.  15,  33),  and  a  de¬ 
scendant  of  the  Kenites,1  who  lived  near  Samaria  in  middle 
Palestine,  had  enjoined  this  simple  tent-life  upon  his  descend¬ 
ants  in  these  words  (Jer.  xxxv.  6,  7):  u  Ye  shall  drink  no  wine, 
neither  ye,  nor  your  sons  for  ever:  neither  shall  ye  build  house, 
nor  sow  seed,  nor  plant  vineyard,  nor  have  any:  but  all  your 
days  ye  shall  dwell  in  tents.”  The  rigid  adherence  which  this 
sect,  that  always  bore  the  name  of  Rechabites,  showed  to  the 
injunctions  of  their  founder,  was  held  up  by  the  prophet  Jere¬ 
miah  as  worthy  of  high  praise,  and  was  commended  to  Israel, 
which  had  so  often  been  untrue  to  Jehovah,  as  an  instance  of 
remarkable  fidelity.  This  injunction  against  the  use  of  wine 
was  also  observed  among  the  Nabathaeans ;  and  the  Rechabites 
of  Assyria,  as  well  as  those  of  southern  Yemen,  who  boast  of 
their  descent  from  Hobab  and  Rechab,  still  adhere  to  it.  Among 
the  Mohammedans,  too,  the  use  of  wine  is  forbidden. 


This  is  a  tribe  of  very  little  importance,  as  it  is  mentioned 
only  once  in  connection  with  the  foregoing,  and  with  the  Kad- 
monites,  of  whom  equally  little  is  known  (Gen.  xv.  19).  We 
only  learn  this  about  them,  that  a  part  of  them  were  scattered 
over  the  southern  portion  of  J udaea  at  the  time  of  the  conquest 
1  V.  Lengerke,  Kenaan ,  pp.  107,  und  203,  204. 



of  Canaan,  surrounded  by  other  more  important  tribes,  and  that 
they  were  in  some  sense  connected  with  Israel ;  for  Caleb,  who 
was  so  efficient  a  helper  in  the  work  of.  bringing  the  land  into 
subjection,  and  to  whom  the  city  of  Hebron  fell  as  his  share,  is 
spoken  of  as  a  Kenizzite.  This  tribe  seems  to  have  pressed  into 
Palestine  from  the  south,  as  the  Amalekites  and  the  Kenites 
had  done.  A  part  of  them  seems,  from  such  circumstances  as 
Caleb’s  marriage  with  their  daughters,  to  have  been  favourably 
disposed  towards  Israel,  while  another  portion  appears  to  have 
formed  an  alliance  with  Edom.1 


who  are  mentioned  only  in  connection  with  the  foregoing  in 
Gen.  xv.  19,  seem  to  be  a  still  less  important  tribe.  They  are 
spoken  of  rather  as  the  u  sons  of  the  east”  (Judg.  vi.  3;  Isa.xb 
14),  and  seem,  like  many  other  tribes  of  similar  character,  to 
have  forced  their  way  westward  from  the  district  lying  farther 
east,  as  the  Ishmaelites  and  Katurians  did  in  ancient  times,  the 
Saracens  during  the  middle  ages,  and  the  Beduins  in  modern 
times.  The  name  does  not  indicate,  therefore,  a  specific  tribe, 
as  those  heretofore  cited  do.  Amono*  the  rude  nations  which 


came  from  the  district  east  of  the  Jordan,  and  from  the  south, 
those  who  leagued  themselves  with  the  Moabites  were  the  most 
dangerous  at  the  time  of  Moses  (Num.  xxii.  4,  7) ;  and  among 
them  the  Midianites  were  the  most  formidable,2  for  their  num¬ 
bers  were  so  great  that  they  are  likened  in  the  sacred  narrative 
to  grasshoppers.  Their  power  was  so  great,  that  they  actually 
gained  such  ascendancy  over  the  Israelites  as  to  hold  them  in 
subjection  for  seven  years,  till  Gideon  released  his  countrymen 
from  the  yoke.  The  Midianites  here  mentioned  are  to  be  dis¬ 
criminated  from  Jethro’s  friends,  who  came  from  the  neighbour¬ 
hood  of  the  TElanitic  Gulf  to  meet  Israel  at  Sinai :  the  former 
lived  in  the  district  north  of  the  Amorite  and  Moabite  territory, 
and  had  paid  tribute  to  the  Amorite  king,  till  freed  from  his 
yoke,  they  had  allied  themselves  with  Balak  king  of  Moab.  With 
the  victory  of  Gideon,  all  allusion  to  their  name  disappears  from 

1  V.  Lengerke,  Kenacin ,  p.  204 ;  Ewald,  Gescli.  i.  p.  298 ;  Winer,  art. 
Kenisiter  -und  Caleb ,  pp.  207,  634. 

2  Gescli.  der  Volks  Israel ,  ii.  pp.  327-329. 



history.  Coupled  with  these  Arabian  races  which  pressed  in 
from  the  east,  the  Maonites  are  mentioned  in  Judg.  x.  12  and  in 
2  Chron.  xxvi.  7,  but  it  is  only  casually.1  The  home  of  this 
tribe  is  unknown ;  it  is  conjectured  to  have  been  the  locality 
represented  by  the  Maan  of  the  present  day,  and  there  seems 
to  be  some  probability  that  this  was  the  case.2 


There  still  remain  the  two  tribes  which  lived  on  the  east 
side  of  the  Dead  Sea  and  of  the  Jordan,  and  which  were  re¬ 
motely  allied  by  blood  to  Israel — the  Moabites  and  the  Ammon¬ 
ites.  The  territories  were  originally  contiguous,  and  extended 
from  the  northern  boundary  of  Edom  to  the  fords  of  the  lower 
Jordan.  The  country  becomes  specially  interesting  in  connec¬ 
tion  with  the  passage  of  the  Israelites  through  it. 

After  their  long  circuit  round  the  unfriendly  land  of 
Edom,  in  the  course  of  which  they  came  as  far  south  as  to  the 
head  of  the  eastern  arm  of  the  Bed  Sea,  they  reached  the 
three  stations  Zalmonah,  Punon,  and  Oboth,  which  indicate  to 
us  with  considerable  exactness  the  southern  limits  of  Moab, 
over  which  the  Hebrews  passed  (Num.  xxxiii.  41-44).  Jour¬ 
neying  from  Oboth,  the  record  tells  us,  they  encamped  in  Ijim, 
at  the  mountains  of  Abarim,  u  in  the  wilderness  which  is  be¬ 
fore  Moab,  toward  the  sunrising”  (Num.  xxi.  11);  or,  as  it 
is  stated  in  Num.  xxxiii.  44,  u  And  they  departed  from  Oboth, 
and  pitched  in  Ije-abarim,  in  the  border  of  Moab.”  In  this 
neighbourhood,  and  on  the  road  from  Kadesh-Barnea,  thirty- 
eight  wretched  years  were  passed  (Deut.  ii.  14),  during  which 
most  of  the  serious  difficulties  which  beset  the  Israelites  were 
encountered,  and  during  which  also  the  whole  generation  of 
warriors  who  left  Egypt  passed  away.  Here,  at  the  brook 
Zered,  Moses  laid  his  injunction  upon  the  people  not  to  trouble 
or  wage  war  with  the  Moabites,  for  their  country  was  not  to 

1  Ilengstenberg,  Die  GeschicJite  Bileams ,  Pt.  i.  1842,  pp.  32-35. 

2  Y.  Lengerke,  Kenaan ,  pp.  204,  205 ;  Ewald,  Gesch.  i.  p.  284,  ii.  p. 
220,  i.a.l. 

3  II.  Relandus,  cap.  xx.  Moabites ;  Gesenius,  Philolog.  crit.  and  histor. 
Commentar  znr  Isaias ,  Pt.  i.  sec.  2,  Leipsig  1821,  pp.  500-507 ;  Kurze,  Gesch. 
des  Moabitischcn  Volks  and  Staats. 



fall  Into  the  possession  of  the  Israelites.  We  have  in  this  con¬ 
nection  the  allusion  already  cited  (Deut.  ii.  10),  that  the 
Emims  were  the  former  occupants  of  the  country  usually 
called  Moab  in  the  Bible,  whose  inhabitants  were  descendants 
of  Lot.  In  Deut.  ii.  13  occur  these  words:  “Now  rise  up, 
and  get  you  over  the  brook  Zered.”  It  is  uncertain  whether 
the  stream  here  alluded  to  is  the  Wadi  el  Ahsa,  the  “  brook  of 
meadows,”  or  the  wadi  of  Kerak,  farther  north ;  but  a  descrip¬ 
tion  of  the  course  is  given  in  Judg.  xi.  18:  “Then  they  went 
along  through  the  wilderness,  and  compassed  the  land  of  Edom, 
and  the  land  of  Moab,  and  pitched  on  the  other  side  of  Arnon, 
but  came  not  within  the  border  of  Moab ;  for  Arnon  was  the 
border  [that  is,  on  the  north]  of  Moab.” 

This  makes  us  acquainted  with  the  boundaries,  but  not 
with  the  land  itself,  of  the  Moabites ;  for  the  Israelites  did  not 
enter  it :  for  their  road  lay  to  the  eastward  of  it,  as  the  great 
Arab  caravan  road  lies  east  of  the  same  territory  at  the  present 
day.  But  though  we  gain  no  special  insight  into  the  character 
of  the  country,  yet  the  biblical  narratives,  and  later  history 
also,  shed  some  light  upon  the  character  of  the  people  who 
inhabited  it. 

From  the  account  in  Gen.  xix.,  we  learn  that  the  Moabites 
were  descended  from  Lot,  who  fled  to  Zoar  after  the  destruc¬ 
tion  of  Sodom  and  Gomorrah ;  but  not  daring  to  remain  even 
there,  withdrew  to  the  mountains,  and  lived  in  a  cave  with  his 
daughters,  where  the  oldest  bore,  to  her  own  father,  a  son 
whose  name  was  called  Moab,  and  the  youngest  one  who  was 
called  Ammi,  and  from  whom  the  Ammonites  sprang.  The 
consciousness  of  a  primitive  relationship  with  these  races,  as 
with  the  Edomites,  lived  on  in  the  minds  of  the  Israelites  for 
five  hundred  years,  although,  in  telling  the  story  of  the  impure 
origin  of  the  Moabites  and  Ammonites,  it  is  hardly  to  be  denied 
that  the  descendants  of  Abraham  displayed  a  certain  scorn  and 
loftiness,  as  if  the  heirs  of  a  nobler  name.  For  as  it  is  stated, 
in  the  account  of  the  warlike  expedition  undertaken  by  Che- 
dorlaomer  (Gen.  xiv.  5 ;  Jer.  xlviii.  1),  that  he  conquered 
the  Emims  in  Kiriathaim,  i.e.  in  the  land  subsequently  known 
as  Moab,  and  as  Moses  asserts  (Deut.  ii.  10)  that  in  former 
times  the  Emims  lived  in  this  country,  it  is  very  probable  that, 
even  prior  to  the  emigration  of  Israel  from  Canaan  to  Egypt, 



the  Moabites  were  the  permanent  possessors  of  the  soil,  and 
had  been  there  fully  five  hundred  years  when  the  Hebrews 
returned.  Nor  was  if  otherwise,  it  would  seem,  with  the 
kindred  nation  of  the  Ammonites  on  the  north,  who  had  dis¬ 
possessed  the  Zamzummims  as  far  as  the  Jabbok  (Deut.  iii. 
16  ;  Josh.  xii.  2).  This  river  was  the  boundary  of  the  sons  of 

Although  the  Israelites  originally  passed  outside  of  the 
Moabite  frontier,  yet,  as  they  advanced  towards  the  north¬ 
eastern  part  of  the  territory,  they  were  permitted  free  transit 
through  it,  and  even  to  make  encampments  within  it.1  This  is 
shown  from  the  list  of  halting-places,  as  well  as  from  the  story 
of  Balaam :  indeed,  there  are  not  wanting  plain  indications 
that  Israel  tarried  a  considerable  time  in  this  country ;  con¬ 
nected  itself  by  close  ties  with  the  people  of  Moab ;  and  at  a 
subsequent  period,  when  it  had  taken  possession  of  Canaan, 
that  it  looked  back  upon  the  period  spent  there  with  great 

This  was  the  brilliant  era  of  the  victory  over  the  common 
enemy  of  Moab  and  Israel,  the  two  Amorite  kings,  whose  sub¬ 
jugation  was  effected  on  the  north  frontier  of  the  Moabites, 
and  gave  a  fresh  impulse  to  the  success  of  the  Israelites.  The 
pleasure  with  which  the  Hebrews  looked  back  upon  that  most 
splendid2  of  their  early  victories,  shows  itself  in  some  frag¬ 
ments  that  remain  of  a  triumphal  song  (Num.  xxi.  14,  15), 
in  the  hymn  which  celebrated  the  conquest  of  Sihon  (Num. 
xxi.  27-30),  and  in  the  refrain  of  cheerful  melodies  like  that 
sung  at  the  wells  dug  with  the  staves  of  kings  (Num.  xxi.  17, 
18).  The  allusions3  to  Ijim,  Dibon,  Gad,  and  Diblathaim 
(Num.  xxxiii.  45-47) — places  which  are  not  in  the  desert,  but 
in  the  heart  of  a  fruitful  country — show  that  Israel  was  not 
confined  entirely  to  the  Avilderness,  although  it  held  firm  to  the 
command  of  Jehovah  not  to  do  injury  to  Moab.  The  Hebrews 
were  even  permitted  to  purchase  food  and  water  of  the 

The  reason  of  the  mutual  kindness  of  feeling  between  the 

1  Ewald,  Gesch.  ii.  pp.  207-214. 

2  Hengstenberg’s  Erlaiiterung  dev  wichtigsten  und  schvcierigsten  Abschnitte 
des  Pentateiichs,  Berlin  1841 ;  Geschichte  Bileams ,  p.  235. 

3  Ewald,  Gesch.  ii.  pp.  209,  210. 



Israelites  and  Moabites,  and  which  did  not  exist  in  the  case  of 
the  equally  nearly  related  but  defiant  Edomites,  lay  in  the 
oppressed  condition  of  the  Moabites  under  the  superior  power 
of  the  Amorites.  The  reason  that  they  did  not  undertake  any 
hostile  enterprise  against  Israel,  was  not  so  much  because  they 
supposed  that  the  powerful  Amorites  would  drive  back  the 
invaders  into  the  desert,  as  from  the  hope  that  the  victory  of 
Israel  would  free  them  too  from  these  new  oppressors. 

For,  as  we  have  seen  above,  the  Amorites,  with  their  king 
Sihon  at  their  head,  had,  shortly  before  the  Israelitisli  invasion, 
set  themselves  against  the  Moabites,  and  against  Chemosh  the 
god  of  Moab,  and  had  taken  away  all  their  territory  between 
the  Arnon  at  the  south  and  the  Jabbok  at  the  north.  They 
had  converted  Heshbon  also  into  their  own  capital. 

This  act  of  robbery1  wras  all  the  more  fraught  with  peril  to 
Moab,  that  an  Amorite  kingdom  had  now  thrust  itself  between 
it  and  its  northern  ally,  the  Ammonites  ;  for  Ammon  confined 
its  exertions  thereafter  simply  to  the  holding  its  southern  fron¬ 
tier,  the  Jabbok,  against  the  Amorites  (Num.  xxi.  24). 

This  intermediate  territory,  which  had  been  wrested  from 
the  Moabites,  had  to  be  crossed  by  the  Israelites,  in  order  that 
they  might  reach  the  fords  of  the  Jordan,  and  enter  the  Pro¬ 
mised  Land.  The  new  possessors,  the  Amorites,  would  not 
permit  a  peaceful  passage  through  it ;  the  sword  was  appealed 
to,  and  that  great  victory  was  won  which  was  fraught  with 
such  momentous  interests  to  Israel. 

Moses  sent  messengers  from  his  camp,  then  in  the  wilder¬ 
ness  of  Kedemoth,  i.e.  the  eastern  country,  to  Sihon  king  of 
Heshbon,  and  bade  them  greet  him  with  friendly  words  (Deut. 
ii.  26-37 ;  Num.  xxi.  21-26)  :  u  Let  me  pass  through  thy  land  : 
I  will  go  along  by  the  highway,  I  will  neither  turn  unto  the  right 
hand  nor  to  the  left.  Thou  slialt  sell  me  meat  for  money,  that 
I  may  eat ;  and  give  me  water  for  money,  that  I  may  drink ; 
only  I  will  pass  through  on  my  feet.”  Sihon  did  not  grant  the 
request,  howTever  :  he  collected  all  his  armed  men,  and  attacked 
the  Israelites  at  Jaazar.  He  was  overcome,  and  his  land  taken 
from  him,  from  the  Arnon  to  the  Jabbok — that  is,  from  the 
boundary  of  Moab  to  that  of  Ammon.  All  his  cities  were 
wrested  from  his  hand,  all  the  inhabitants  destroyed,  all  the 

1  Ewald,  Gesch.  ii.  p.  210. 



cattle  taken  away  as  "booty:  “  From  Aroer,  which  is  by  the 
brink  of  the  river  of  Arnon,  and  from  the  city  that  is  by  the 
river,  even  unto  Gilead  [on  the  south  side  of  the  Jabbok], 
there  was  not  one  city  too  strong  for  us :  the  Lord  our  God 
delivered  all  unto  us.”  This  was  the  occasion  which  called 
forth  the  Song  of  Victory  contained  in  Num.  xxi.  30,  full  of 
exultant  scorn  over  the  downfallen  Amorites,  who  had  lately 
tyrannized  so  despotically  over  the  weaker  Moabites  :  “We  have 
shot  at  them :  Heshbon  is  perished  even  unto  Dibon,  and  we 
have  laid  them  waste  even  unto  Nophah  [Nobah  of  Judg.  viii. 
ii],  which  reacheth  unto  Medeba.”  1  This  was  before  Hesh¬ 
bon,  afterwards  rebuilt  by  Reuben,  had  become  the  important 
city  which  it  afterwards  was  (Num.  xxxii.  37). 

The  result  of  this  brilliant  victory  is  seen  in  the  emphasis 
which  is  always  afterwards  laid  upon  the  Arnon  as  the  boun¬ 
dary  of  Moab,  Israel  claiming  in  behalf  of  Reuben  the  right 
to  possess  the  territory  southward  as  far  as  to  that  stream.  Nor 
have  we  any  reason  for  supposing  that  Moab  made  an  effort 
to  recover  of  the  Israelites  the  territory  which  had  formerly 
been  theirs.  It  was  not  strong  enough,  indeed,  to  enforce  any 
such  claims  ;  but  it  is  evident  that  the  people  of  the  country 
had  not  forgotten  that  their  territory  formerly  extended  much 
farther  to  the  north :  for  the  name  of  the  level  district  at  the 
north  end  of  the  Dead  Sea,  opposite  to  the  plains  of  Jericho 
(Josh.  iv.  13,  v.  10)  and  north  of  the  Arnon,  the  northern 
boundary  of  Moab  after  the  Amorites  had  taken  away  a  part 
of  their  territory,  long  bore  the  name  “the  plains  of  Moab.”2 
This  title  shows  how  fresh  was  the  recollection  of  the  former 
possession  ;  and  at  the  time  of  Moses  the  Amorite  invasion  had 
by  no  means  caused  it  to  fade.  After  the  apportioning  of  the 
territory  to  Reuben  and  Gad,  however,  the  tribe  could  not 
sustain  itself ;  and  the  last  allusion  to  it  occurs  in  the  book  of 
Joshua,  in  connection  with  the  allotting  of  the  district  to  the 
Israelites  (xiii.  32)  :  “  These  are  the  countries  which  Moses  did 
distribute  for  inheritance  in  the  plains  of  Moab,  on  the  other 
side  Jordan,  bv  Jericho  eastward.” 

The  locality  known  as  the  plains  of  Moab,  although  no 

1  Ewald,  Gesch.  ii.  p.  212. 

2  Hengstenberg,  Die  wichstigsten  Abschn.  des  Pentateuchs ,  Pt.  i.  1812 ; 
Gesch.  Bileams ,  pp.  226,  230  ;  comj).  Ewald,  ii.  p.  217. 



longer  belonging  to  the  former  possessors,  became  subsequently 
a  place  of  great  interest  and  importance  to  Israel.  It  was  from 
it  that  the  expedition  against  the  Amorite  king  of  Bashan  pro¬ 
ceeded  i1  it  was  in  its  immediate  vicinity  that  the  effort  of  Balak 
to  secure  Balaam’s  curse  upon  Israel  took  place  ;  it  was  in  these 
plains  of  Moab  that  Moses  issued  the  laws  which  were  to  serve 
for  the  governance  of  Israel  (Deut.  i.)  ;  it  was  there  that  the  last 
retaliatory  war  was  waged  against  the  Midianites  (Num.  xxxi.)  ; 
it  was  in  the  district  closely  adjoining  that  Moses  died ;  and 
lastly,  it  was  thence  that  Israel  marched  victoriously  across  the 
Jordan  into  Canaan  (Josh.  iii.). 

It  appears,  therefore,  that  after  the  success  in  the  conflict 
with  Silion,  Israel  dwelt  for  a  season  in  the  land  of  the 
Amorites  (Num.  xxi.  31-35).  During  this  time  Moses  despatched 
messengers  to  Jaazar  [in  the  upper  Jabbok,  near  the  Ammonite 
boundary  and  that  of  the  Amorite  kingdom  of  Bashan].  The 
Israelites  then  turned  (probably  towards  the  north-east,  leaving 
the  country  of  the  Ammonites  at  the  west),  and  proceeded 
along  the  road  to  Bashan.  Here  they  were  met  by  Og,  and  a 
battle  took  place  near  Edrei,  afterwards  Adraa,  in  which  the 
Israelites  were  victorious.  The  Amorite  king,  his  sons,  and  all 
his  followers,  and  sixty  cities,  were  captured  (Deut.  iii.  4,  5). 
We  then  find  the  Hebrews  encamping  in  the  plains  of  Moab, 
just  across  the  Jordan  from  Jericho.  The  name  Shittim,  i.e. 
place  of  acacias,  is  elsewhere  given  to  the  place  (Num.  xxv.  1, 
xxxiii.  49). 

From  Josh.  xii.  2,  it  appears  that  the  Amorite  rule  proper 
extended  northward  beyond  the  Jabbok  as  far  as  to  the  Sea  of 
Chinnereth,  i.e.  Galilee  ;  while  the  power  of  the  Amorite  king 
of  Bashan  reached  from  Ashtaroth  and  Edrei,  extended  north¬ 
ward  as  far  as  Mount  Ilermon  (i.e.  to  the  foot  of  the  Lebanon), 
and  to  the  territory  of  the  Geshurites  and  the  Maachathites. 

It  is  not  surprising  that  the  power  of  Israel,  exhibited  in 
two  such  victories  over  the  great  Amorite  kings  Sihon  and  Og, 
should  infuse  a  spirit  of  fear  and  dismay  into  the  timid  heart 
of  the  Moabite  king  Balak  (Num.  xxii.  23,  24).  Uniting  him¬ 
self  to  the  elders  of  the  Midianites,  and  in  the  true  spirit  of  a 
shepherd  race,  comparing  the  conquering  march  of  the  Israelites 
to  an  ox  that  u  licketh  up  the  grass  of  the  fields,”  he  did  not  go 

1  Hengstenberg,  i.a.l.  p.  25. 



boldly  forth  to  meet  and  overcome  the  invader,  but  turned  for 
help  to  the  priests,  invoking  the  special  assistance  of  the  most 
renowned  of  them — Balaam,  a  Syrian  prophet  or  seer,  who  was 
living  near  the  Euphrates1  (Num.  xxii.  5,  xxiii.  7).  lie  sum¬ 
moned  this  man  from  his  distant  home  to  his  own  capital  on  the 
Arnon,  and  sought  to  induce  him  to  curse  Israel :  u  Come  now 
therefore,  I  pray  thee,  curse  me  this  people  ;  for  they  are  too 
mighty  for  me  :  for  I  wot  that  he  whom  thou  blessest  is  blessed, 
and  he  whom  thou  cursest  is  cursed.”  The  story  of  this  emi¬ 
nent  seer,  summoned  from  a  place  far  away  that  he  might  blight 
Israel  with  his  curse,  unblinded  with  the  honours  paid  to  him 
by  Balak,  and  stedfastly  refusing  to  change  his  blessing  into  a 
curse,  is  declared  by  Gesenius2  to  be  a  genuine  epic,  a  delineation 
worthy  of  the  greatest  poet  of  all  time.  It  gives,  too,  a  very  clear 
insight  into  the  spiritual  condition  of  the  people  then  living, 
particularly  of  the  Moabites.  More  than  this,  it  affords  a  most 
trustworthy  picture  of  the  geographical3  features  involved  in 
these  historical  events,  whose  mutual  relations  have  of  late 
been  so  carefully  traced  by  European  commentators,  while  the 
localities  involved  have  been  made  the  subject  of  the  most 
careful  search,  as  I  shall  have  occasion  in  another  place  to 

For  the  present  it  is  enough  to  say,  that  although  the  tribes 
of  Beuben  and  Gad,  which  were  especially  rich  in  cattle, 
desired  very  eagerly  to  enter  upon  the  possession  of  the  territory 
wrested  from  the  Amorites,  and  which  was  remarkable  for  its 
excellent  pasturage,  yet  the  formal  permission  was  not  granted ; 
for  it  was  suspected  that  the  two  tribes  would  be  unfaithful  in 
the  great  work  of  subjugating  the  country  on  the  other  side  of 
Jordan,  and  would  quietly  settle  down,  leaving  their  brethren 
to  fight  without  their  assistance  (Num.  xxxii.  6,  16-18).  It  is 
clearly  shown  by  the  biblical  narrative,  that  a  portion  of  the 
early  population  of  the  country  remained  until  its  subsequent 
possession  by  the  Gadites  in  the  north  and  the  Beubenites 
in  the  south  (Num.  xxxii.  33-38),  while  the  half  tribe  of 
Manasseh,  i.e.  the  descendants  of  Machir,  were  compelled  to 

1  Hengstenberg,  i.a.l.  p.  234. 

2  Gesenius,  in  Jesaias  Commentary  Part  i.  p.  504. 

3  Hengstenberg,  i.a.l.  pp.  4,  235-251 ;  comp.  Ewald,  GescJi.  ii.  pp. 


1  r  k 


straggle  still  with  the  Amorites  for  the  possession  of  the  pasture 
land  which  subsequently  became  theirs. 

Even  after  Israel  had  crossed  the  Jordan,  warfare1  with  the 
former  lords  of  the  territory  east  of  that  river  did  not  wholly 
cease ;  for  what  Balak  wished,  but  did  not  dare  to  do,  was  after¬ 
wards  undertaken  by  Eglon,  one  of  the  subsequent  kings  of 
Moab  (Judg.  iii.  12-30).  He  attacked  the  city  of  Jericho,  and 
compelled  Israel  to  pay  tribute  to  him  for  two  years.  This 
yoke  was  at  length  cast  off  by  the  bravery  of  one  of  the 
Hebrews;  and  so  much  were  the  mutual  relations  of  the  Israelites 
and  the  Moabites  changed  after  this,  that  for  a  long  time,  as  we 
learn  from  the  book  of  Ruth,  such  a  friendly  spirit  existed,  that 
Moab  became  a  refuge  for  exiled  Hebrews,  or  those  who  chose 
to  live  among  foreigners  rather  than  in  their  own  land.  But 
this  condition  of  affairs  was  not  permanent.  Saul,  David,  and 
the  kino-s  of  Judah  as  well  as  of  Israel,  were  engaged  in  constant 
encounters  with  the  Moabites,  in  which  they  sometimes  had  the 
advantage,  and  were  sometimes  worsted.  David,  however, 
subjugated  them  completely  (2  Sam.  viii.  2,  12,  xxiii.  20),  and 
compelled  them  to  pay  tribute;  and  after  the  formation  of  the 
two  rival  kingdoms  of  Judah  and  Israel,  a  hundred  thousand 
lambs,  and  as  many  rams,  were  exacted  of  the  Moabites.  After 
the  death  of  Ahab  (897  B.C.),  however,  they  refused  to  pay 
tribute ;  and  the  year  after,  during  the  reign  of  Jehoram,  they 
had  grown  bold  enough  to  send  predatory  expeditions  through 
Canaan  itself.  At  the  time  of  Isaiah,  the  cities  of  the  Amorite 
portion  of  Moab  had  come  entirely  into  the  possession  of  the 
Moabites.  The  tribes  of  Reuben  and  Gad  had  already  been 
overpowered  by  the  Assyrian  Pul,  Tiglath  Pileser,  and  Slial- 
inanezer,  and  carried  into  exile ;  and  the  primitive  occupants 
of  their  domain  could  press  in  and  possess  it  again,  as  the 
Edomites  did  in  Judah.  It  is  very  probable,  too,  that  many  of 
the  places  within  the  territory  assigned  to  Reuben,  Gad,  and  half 
Manasseh,  never  fairly  came  under  the  real  dominion  of  the 
Hebrews,  and  always  remained  a  nominal  possession.  This  was 
verv  often  the  case  with  fertile  tracts  mentioned  in  the  book  of 
Joshua,  lying  in  the  territory  of  the  Tyrians,  Sidonians,  and 
Philistines,  and  which,  though  spoken  of  as  captured  by  Israel, 

1  Gesenius,  Gesch.  des  Moabit.  Volks ,  in  Jesaias  Comment.  Pt.  i.  pp. 



yet  never  could  be  strictly  said  to  be  held  by  their  captors  for 
any  available  use. 

The  Moabites  next  appear  as  the  allies  of  Nebuchadnezzar 
and  the  Chaldeans  (2  Kings  xxiv.  2).  They  were  unable  to 
suppress  their  joy  at  the  downfall  of  the  Israelitish  power, 
notwithstanding  the  old  ties  of  blood  which  connected  Moab 
and  Israel  (Ezek.  xxv.  8-11).  Their  later  fate  is  unknown  to 
us.  It  is  possible  that  it  was  the  same  as  that  of  the  Amorites, 
who  were  attacked  by  Nebuchadnezzar  five  years  after  the 
destruction  of  Jerusalem,  and  carried  into  exile. 

The  national  hatred  between  the  Hebrews  and  the  Moabites 
had  meanwhile  mounted  to  the  highest  point :  it  uttered  itself 
among  the  Israelitish  people  in  the  language  of  extreme  scorn 
at  the  ignominious  extraction  of  the  Moab  race.  The  prophets 
expressed  the  same  in  the  curses  which  they  heaped  upon  Moab. 
The  Moabites  responded  not  only  in  hostile  and  predatory 
attacks,  but  in  words  of  derision  and  of  boastful  pride. 

Amos  foretells  the  downfall  of  Moab  as  the  result  of  its 
cruelty ;  Zephaniah  predicts  the  same  as  the  penalty  of  their 
scorn  and  contempt ;  J eremiah  turns  against  the  Moabites 
afresh  the  curses  of  Balaam  ;  Isaiah  does  the  same ;  and  Ezekiel 
condemns  sternly  their  exultation  at  the  downfall  of  Judah 
(Ezek.  xxv.  8-11). 

In  no  ideal  picture  of  brilliant  victories,  and  of  a  golden 
future  for  Israel,  was  there  wanting  a  scene  depicting  the 
subjection  of  Moab.  The  apparent  drawing  together  of  both 
races  after  the  captivity,  and  the  alliances  by  marriage  which 
took  place,  led  to  nothing  permanent ;  and  even  this  connec¬ 
tion  wras  speedily  checked  by  the  theocratic  zeal  of  Ezra  and 
Nehemiah  (Ezra  ix.  1 ;  Neh.  xiii.  1).  During  the  epoch  of  the 
Maccabees  the  Moabites  are  scarcely  mentioned.  Josephus 
speaks  of  some  Moabite  cities  as  existing  between  the  Arnon 
and  the  Jabbok  at  the  time  of  Alex.  Janngeus  ( Aniiq .  xiii.  15). 
Since  that  day,  however,  the  name  of  that  nation  has  dis¬ 
appeared,  losing  itself,  like  that  of  the  Edomites,  Midianites, 
Ammonites,  and  others,  beneath  the  flood  of  Arabian  tribes 
which  set  in  from  the  east  and  covered  all  that  land. 




This  tribe,  of  similar  descent  with  that  of  Moab — like  that, 
too,  the  conqueror  of  the  primitive  people  of  the  land,  and  sub¬ 
sequently  the  objects  of  Amorite  rapacity — experienced  a  fortune 
similar  in  all  respects  to  that  of  the  Moabites. 

At  the  outset  Israel  did  not  interfere  with  the  southern 
boundary  of  the  Ammonites,  the  river  Jabbok  (Num.  xxi.  24), 
but  were  contented,  so  far  as  the  country  east  of  the  Jordan  is 
concerned,  with  the  territory  which  the  Amorites  held,  and  which 
they  had  wrested  from  the  Moabites  and  the  Ammonites.  This 
occasioned  many  quarrels,  especially  since,  during  the  time  of 
Joshua  and  the  first  centuries  of  the  judges’  rule,  the  children 
of  Israel  paid  idolatrous  worship  to  the  gods  of  their  neighbours, 
including  the  Ammonites  (Judg.  x.  6),  and  contracted  marriage 
alliances  with  their  daughters.  The  Ammonites  not  only 
attacked  the  Hebrews  on  the  east  side  of  Jordan,  but  they 
passed  over  the  river  and  attacked  Judah,  Benjamin,  and 
Ephraim,  carrying  confusion  wherever  they  went.  At  last, 
however,  the  Hebrews  gained  possession  of  Gilead,  Jeplithah 
at  their  head,  and  passed  triumphantly  through  Manasseh  and 
Mizpeli  (at  the  foot  of  Hermon,  including  Banks  and  el-Huleh). 
Judg.  xi.  33:  “And  he  smote  them  from  Aroer  [the  northern 
place  of  this  name  near  the  head  waters  of  the  Jabbok,  not  the 
southern  one  on  the  Arnon],  even  till  thou  come  to  Minnith, 
even  twenty  cities,  and  unto  the  plain  of  the  vineyards,  with  a 
very  great  slaughter.  Thus  the  children  of  Ammon  were 
subdued  before  the  children  of  Israel.” 

Their  subsequent  boldness  in  attacking  Gilead,  and  the 
threats  which  they  expressed  against  the  city  of  Jabesh  in 
especial,  drew  down  the  wrath  of  Saul  upon  them,  who,  by  his 
victory  over  Nahash  the  Ammonite  king,  gained  that  recogni¬ 
tion  as  a  warrior  and  a  deliverer  which  subsequently  placed 
him  on  the  throne.  At  a  later  period,  the  treatment  of  the 
messengers  whom  David  sent  to  the  new  kino;  after  the  death 
of  Nahash,  with  messages  of  kindness  and  consolatory  words, 
led  to  a  fearful  retaliatory  war,  from  whose  destructive  effects 
not  even  the  prompt  assistance  rendered  by  the  troops  of 
Hadadezer  the  king  of  Syria  could  preserve  the  Ammonites. 
Terrible  slaughters  ensued:  Rabbah  (Rabbath  Ammon)  was  for 



years  in  a  state  of  siege,  and  at  last  captured,  the  crown  torn 
from  the  brow  of  the  king,  all  valuable  property  contained  in 
the  cities  of  Ammon  taken  away,  and  their  inhabitants  cruelly 

New  risings  followed  new  subjections ;  the  same  national 
hatred  as  in  Moab  inflamed  Ammon  against  Israel.  The 
Ammonites  fought  against  Judah  under  Nebuchadnezzar;  and 

O  O  7 

after  the  captivity  they  bound  themselves  to  prevent  the  re¬ 
erection  of  the  walls  of  Jerusalem.  They  wrere  impelled  to  this 
by  the  command  of  Moses  (Deut.  xxiii.  3),  “  An  Ammonite  or 
Moabite  shall  not  enter  into  the  congregation  of  the  Lord;  even 
to  their  tenth  generation  shall  they  not  enter  into  the  congre¬ 
gation  of  the  Lord.”  At  a  later  period,  however,  some  of  the 
Israelites,  and  among  them  Solomon,  broke  through  this  edict, 
and  married  Ammonite  wives. 

Under  Antiochus  Epiphanes  the  king  of  Syria,  who  by  his 
tyranny  and  scornful  behaviour  in  the  temple  made  his  name 
hateful  in  Jerusalem,  the  Ammonites,  his  allies,  found  their  last 
opportunity  to  avenge  themselves  on  the  Jews.  This  occurred, 
too,  at  a  time  when  they  were  suffering  greatly  from  injuries 
experienced  at  the  hands  of  the  last  king  of  Syria,  Antiochus 
hi.,  who  had  despoiled  their  capital,  Kabbath  Ammon,  after¬ 
wards  known  as  Philadelphia.  With  the  rise  of  Mattathias  the 
Asmonsean,  who,  in  conjunction  with  his  heroic  son  Judas 
Maccabseus,  opposed  the  invasion  of  Antiochus  Epiphanes,  a 
new  era  of  victory  was  introduced  for  Israel :  the  Ammonites 
were  permanently  driven  out  from  the  territory  west  of  the 
Jordan,  and  in  that  east  of  the  river  their  name  disappeared 
like  that  of  the  Moabites  before  the  new  Arabian  appellations 
had  forced  their  way.  The  worship  of  their  god  Moloch  found 
more  favour  west  of  the  Jordan  than  that  of  the  Moabite 

After  this  review  of  the  tribes  dwelling  outside  of  Canaan 
and  upon  its  borders,  but  not  partaking  of  the  strict  Canaanite 
character,  the  Philistines  alone  remain  to  be  spoken  of.  But 
as  this  people  was  entirely  without  close  relations  to  the  inland 
tribes  already  mentioned,  and  was  a  maritime  nation  of  colonists,  ' 
dwelling  only  on  the  south-west  coast,  and  having  peculiar 
institutions,  a  peculiar  history,  and  great  independence  of  other 
nations,  and  then  disappearing,  their  influence  on  Palestine  and 



its  fortunes  was  closely  linked  with  certain  definite  localities, 
whose  geographical  relations  we  must  understand  before  we 
can  deal  intelligently  with  the  Philistines.  I  shall  treat  of 
these  places  in  detail  when  I  come  to  speak  of  the  coast  of 
Palestine.  Meanwhile  we  pass  to  the  special  geographical 
character  of  the  interior. 



S  our  preliminary  sketch  has  made  us  sufficiently 
acquainted  with  the  general  character  of  this  most 
striking  feature  in  the  physical  geography  of  Pales¬ 
tine,  we  will  pass  without  further  delay  to  study  the 
river  in  detail — studying  it  in  its  upper,  middle,  and  lower 



On  the  southern  slope  of  the  eastern  Lebanon  (Anti-Lebanon, 
or  more  correct^,  Anti-Libanus,  Ptol.  v.  15,  8,  etc.),  which 
sends  out  two  high  spurs,  one  eastward  towards  Damascus, 
the  other  south-westward  towards  ITasbeya,  lies  intermediate 
between  the  two,  a  third  and  higher  spur  running  southward, 
and  forming  the  northern  boundary  of  Israel — the  majestic 
Hermon,  known  by  the  Sidonians  as  Sirion,  and  by  the  Amor- 
ites  as  Shenir, — names  which  indicate  a  bastion,  or  strong 
military  post1  (Deut.  iv.  48,  iii.  9).  Its  scarped  sides,  which 
as  early  as  the  time  of  Solomon  used  to  supply  the  inhabit¬ 
ants  of  the  valley  at  its  foot,  Jerusalem,  Tyre,  and  Sidon,  with 
the  luxury  of  snow,  Abulfeda,  a  native  of  the  district,  spoke 

1  Rosenmuller,  Bill.  Alterth.  i.  p.  235. 



of  as  mre  immortali  opertus  j1  and  even  now  it  is  the  friendly 
custom  of  the  Jews  in  Hasbeya  to  offer  their  guests  a  draught 
of  freshly  melted  snow  water  from  Hermon.  It  is  these  ice- 
clad  heights  which  feed  the  springs  of  the  Jordan,  flowing  as 
they  do  above  and  below  the  surface  to  supply  the  great  stream 
of  Palestine.  The  passages  in  Joshua — for  example,  xiii.  5, 
“  All  Lebanon  toward  the  sunrising,  from  Baal-gad  under  Mount 
Ilermon  [i.e.  from  Panium,  or  more  probably  Hasbeya2 3],  unto 
the  entering  into  Hamath  ” — show  clearly  that  the  present 
snow-capped  summit  of  Jebel  es  Sheikh  (the  Chief),  with  the 
southern  appendage  Jebel  Heish,  first  thoroughly  explored 
by  Burckhardt  and  Seetzen  early  in  this  century,  correspond 
precisely  in  situation  to  the  Hermon  of  the  Mosaic  period. 

We  are  indebted  in  part  to  the  two  travellers  just  named, 
and  in  part  to  their  successors  in  the  same  field,  for  a  satisfac¬ 
tory  account  of  the  country  in  which  the  sources  of  the  Jordan 
are  found,  so  far  as  it  could  be  explored  without  the  help  of  the 
best  mathematical  survev. 

Between  Hermon  and  the  Anti-Lebanon  of  Hasbeya  is  the 
fountain-head  of  the  longest  western  arm  of  the  Jordan,  Nahr 
Hasbany.  This,  although  alluded  to  by  FUrrer  von  Haimen- 
dorf  in  1566,  who  passed  through  a  portion  of  the  Jordan  valley, 
yet  was  first  described  by  Seetzen  with  great  accuracy  in  1806, 
as  the  most  northerly,  and  at  the  same  time  the  most  affluent," 
branch  of  the  river.  This  was  a  new  view,  for  in  ancient 
times  it  was  not  regarded  as  the  chief  source.  Burckhardt,4 
who  followed  the  course  of  this  mountain  stream  from  its 
fountain-head  directly  southward  to  its  entrance  into  the  plain 
of  el-Huleh,  confirmed  Seetzen’s  view,  and  then  turned  his 
course  eastward  around  the  southern  foot  of  Hermon  to  the 
celebrated  spring  of  Banias  or  Paneas  (Caesarea  Philippi), 
which,  as  at  Herod’s  grotto  of  Pan,  adorned  with  a  temple  in 
honour  of  Caesar  Augustus,  was  known  to  Josephus  (Antiq, 
xv.  10,  3).  In  two  other  passages  ( Antiq .  v.  i.  22,  and  Bell. 
Jud.  i.  21,  23)  he  repeats  the  statement,  that  the  source  of  the 

1  Abulfedre  Tabul.  Syr .  ed.  Koehler,  p.  96,  Note  96. 

2  Keil,  Commentary  on  Joshua ,  etc on  ch.  xi.  16-23. 

3  V.  Zach,  Mon.  Corr.  xviii.  1808  ;  Letter  from  Acre,  1806,  pp.  340-344, 

4  J.  L.  Burckhardt,  Trav.  in  Syria  and  the  Holy  Land ,  Lond.  1822, 
pp.  30-37. 

VOL.  II. 




Jordan  was  under  an  arching  rock,  at  the  southern  base  of  the 
mountain,  and  adds  that  the  Napthalites  had  possession  of  upper 
Galilee  as  far  as  to  Lebanon,  and  the  springs  of  the  Jordan, 
which  issue  from  Hermon. 

Here,  in  a  charming  spot  on  the  southern  extremity  of  the 
mountain  range,  according  to  the  old  account,  the  head  waters 
of  the  sacred  river  made  their  appearance,  where  a  dark  grotto 
led  to  unfathomable  reservoirs  concealed  within  the  limestone 
cliffs.  This  whole  region,  together  with  the  neighbouring  forest, 
and  the  peak  towering  above  all,  was  in  ancient  time  sacred  to 
Pan,  guardian  protector  of  woods  and  of  herds ;  and  his  name 
seems  to  have  given  rise  to  the  old  appellation  which,  in  a 
somewhat  changed  form,  remains  to  the  present  time. 

According  to  this,  there  is  no  doubt  as  to  the  identity  of  the 
celebrated  source  of  the  Jordan,  among  the  ancients  and  among 
natives  of  the  country  who  have  lived  in  comparatively  recent 
time;  but  Josephus  speaks  of  yet  another  locality,  Phiala,  east 
of  Paneas,  which  he  held  to  be  the  true  source  of  the  Jordan ; 
and  in  four  other  places  he  alludes  to  minor  springs  that  fed 
the  river,  and  which  he  supposes  to  be  connected  with  Dan 
and  the  setting  up  of  the  golden  calf.  Regarding  both  of  the 
statements  respecting  the  sources  of  the  Jordan,  there  was 
for  a  long  time  a  great  deal  of  uncertainty ;  and  there  must 
have  continually  been  doubts  and  hypotheses,  until  there  was 
a  thorough  personal  examination  of  that  richly  watered  and 
variously  diversified  landscape.  The  exact  Burckhardt1  ex¬ 
plored  the  region  in  an  admirable  spirit  of  discovery,  but  with 
merely  partial  results,  in  his  journey  from  the  Hasbeya  Valley 
to  Banias ;  and  on  his  return  along  the  north  side  of  the 
Lebanon  to  Damascus,  in  October  1810,  as  well  as  upon  his 
second  journey  in  June  1812,  from  Damascus  via  Kanneytra 
and  Birket  Nefah  (which  he  erroneously  held2  to  be  Lake 
Phiala)  to  Jacob’s  Bridge,  below  Lake  Huleh. 

Burckhardt  was  followed,  of  course  with  some  deviations 
from  the  routes  taken  by  himself,  by  several  travellers  whose 
observations  are  valuable  :  Banks,  Irby,  and  Mangles3  in  1818  ; 
Buckingham  and  Schubert,4  1837  ;  Captain  Simonds  and 

1  Burckhardt,  Trav.  p.  43.  2  The  same,  pp.  311-316. 

3  Irby  and  Mangles,  Trav.  pp.  285-291. 

4  Schubert,  Reise,  iii.  pp.  260-270. 



Robe1  in  1840 ;  the  American  missionaries,  Wolcott  and  Thom¬ 
son,  1843  ;  and  lastly,  by  the  very  careful  observer  Dr  Wilson,2 
in  1843  and  1844.  To  Wolcott  and  Thomson3  I  wish  to  ex¬ 
press  a  special  obligation. 

In  the  following  pages  I  shall  gather  up  the  results  already 
gained,  and  endeavour  to  depict  the  physical  character  of  the 
country  where  the  Jordan  rises,  and  to  trace  all  its  tributaries, 
thus  far  known,  to  their  confluence  in  el-Huleh.  We  shall 
be  obliged  in  the  search  to  follow  the  explorers  just  named 
through  highways  and  byways,  and  shall  hope  to  find  much 
light  shed  upon  the  connection  of  history  and  geography  in 
this  remarkable  locality. 




1.  The  mountain  system  of  Sermon  {Jebel  es  Sheikh ),  or  of 
Southern  Anti-Lebanon ,  with  Jebel  Safed  and  Jebel  Heish. 

From  the  central  group  of  ITermon  or  Aermon  (as  Jerome4 
heard  it  called),  which  towers  above  every  other  object,  the 
study  of  the  entire  landscape  proceeds.  It  is  therefore  a 
matter  of  regret  that  no  one  has  as  yet  ascended  its  highest 
peak,  which  bears  the  common  name  of  Jebel  es  Sheikh,  or  the 
Chief.  All  travellers  have  admired  its  majestic  height,  which 
was  supposed  by  Russegger,5  looking  from  Tabor,  to  be  about 
9500  Paris  feet.  He  describes  the  mountain  as  towering  up 
sublimely  into  the  clear  blue  sky,  and  as  being  covered  with 
snow  as  far  down  as  the  Jebel  et  Teltsh.  Previous  travellers, 
who  had  approached  from  the  south  and  the  south-west  sides,  had 

1  El.  Smith  and  TV\  Wolcott,  in  Biblioth.  Sacra ,  ed.  b.  E.  Robinson, 
New  York  1843,  pp.  11-15. 

2  J.  Wilson,  The  Lands  of  the  Bible ,  Edin.  1847,  vol.  ii.  pp.  111-325. 

3  W.  M.  Thomson,  The  Sources  of  the  Jordan ,  the  Lake  el  Huleli ,  and  the 
adjacent  country ,  with  notes  by  Robinson ,  in  Bibl.  Sacra ,  vol.  iii.  1846,  pp. 

4  Onomastic,  s.v.  Aermon ;  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  p.  425. 

6  Russegger,  R.  in  Pal.  vol.  iii.  1847,  p.  130. 



observed  only  one  peak;  but  Wolcott,  who  looked  at  it  from 
many  points,  discovered  that  it  had  two,  the  northern  one  of 
which  bears  the  name  of  Bint  Jebeil.1  Robinson 2  even  saw 
from  Tabor  only  one  summit,  since  the  two  which  can  be  else¬ 
where  seen,  appear,  when  looked  at  from  that  point,  to  blend 
in  a  huge  pyramid.  He  was  baffled,  as  Pococke  had  been, 
with  the  plural  form  which  the  Psalmist  had  used,  not  without 
reason  (Ps.  xlii.  6)  :  u  O  my  God,  my  soul  is  cast  down  within 
me  :  therefore  will  I  remember  Thee  from  the  land  of  Jordan, 
and  of  the  Hermonites,”  i.e.  Hermonim,  instead  of  the  singular 
form  Hermon.  Wilson3  observed  this  double  peak  as  he 
passed  through  the  south-west  corner  of  el-Huleh,  and  has 
given  a  sketch  of  it  in  his  Lands  of  the  Bible. 

A  far  better  point  whence  to  observe  the  entire  group  of 
which  Hermon  is  the  centre,  is  at  the  northern  end  of  Lake 
Tiberias,  especially  on  the  high  plateau  of  Benit,  a  half-hour’s 
distance  north-east  of  the  well-known  city  of  Safed,  which 
itself  lies  3000  feet4  above  the  level  of  el-Huleh.  Towards 
the  north-east  may  be  seen,  perched  upon  a  rocky  eminence,  the 
castle  of  Banias  ;  and  twice  as  far  away  towers  in  all  its  majesty 
the  lofty  Jebel  es  Sheikh,  w7ith  its  long  narrow  glaciers,  which 
stretch  like  white  glistening  bands  from  the  crown  of  ice  on 
the  summit  far  down,  and  shimmer  in  the  midsummer  sun. 
The  uncommon  clearness  of  the  atmosphere  affords  a  distinct 
view  of  the  whole  mighty  Lebanon  range  running  from  north¬ 
west  to  south-east,  and  of  the  Anti-Lebanon  with  Hermon  at 
the  south ;  the  two  systems  separated  by  the  long  and  elevated 
valley  of  Bekka5  (Coele-Syria),  through  a  great  part  of  which 
the  Litany  dashes  towards  the  south-west.  How  far  the 
fructifying  dewrs  of  Hermon,  whose  effects  are  very  visible 
in  the  rank  vegetation  of  the  meadows,  fields,  and  forests  of 
the  immediate  neighbourhood,  may  extend  their  influence,  is  a 

1  Mr  Porter  discovered  in  1852  that  Hermon  has  three  summits,  the 
loftiest  one  of  which  is  the  most  northern.  The  highest  point  has  been 
ascertained  by  Maj.  Scott  to  be  9376  Eng.  feet. — Ed. 

2  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  250 ;  Bill.  Sacra ,  1843,  p.  13  ;  Abulf. 
Tab.  Syr.  ed.  Koehler,  p.  18,  Note  78. 

3  J.  Wilson,  The  Lands  of  the  Bible ,  vol.  ii.  p.  161. 

4  Robinson,  ii.  441. 

5  Dr  Steinheil,  Huhen-messungen  auf  v.  Schubert's  Reise ,  Bayr.  Gel. 
Aug.  1840,  No.  47,  March,  p.  382. 



subject  on  which  we  cannot  now  enter.  It  is  enough  to  re¬ 
mark,  however,  that  the  passage  (Ps.  cxxxiii.  3),  u  As  the  clew 
of  Hermon,  and  as  the  dew  which  descended  upon  the  mountain 
of  Zion,”  is  only  a  simile,  and  that  it  can  hardly  be  meant  that 
the  effect  of  the  dews  of  Hermon  were  felt  as  far  as  Jerusalem  ; 
for  in  Deut.  iv.  48  (compare  iii.  9)  the  name  Zion  is  used  with 
reference  to  Hermon  itself. 

The  Anti-Lebanon,  or  Jebel  esh  Sharkie,  as  it  is  called, 
meaning  the  east  mountain,  divides  into  two  parts  at  the  lati¬ 
tude  of  Damascus,  which  lies  at  its  eastern  base.  Between 
these  two  divergent  spurs  is  the  Wadi  et  Teim,  opening  to¬ 
wards  the  south,  and  completely  parallel  with  the  basin  of  the 

The  more  easterly  of  these  two  side  ranges  extends  in  a 
south-westerly  direction,  and  is  the  real  continuation  of  the 
Anti-Lebanon.  Its  loftiest  peak  is  the  Jebel  es  Sheikh,  or 
Hermon,  lying  between  Rasheya  and  Ilasbeya,  and,  according 
to  some,  towering  higher  than  even  Jebel  Sanin,  the  highest 
peak  of  the  Lebanon. 

South  of  Ilasbeya  this  chain  begins  to  lose  its  height,  which 
comes  to  its  maximum  in  Hermon,  and  diminishes  more  and 
more  till  the  Wadi  et  Teim,  which  is  traversed  by  the  Ilas- 
bany  arm  of  the  Jordan,  opens  north-west  from  Banias,  and 
expands  into  the  plain  of  el-Huleh,  whither  the  Hasbeya 
branch  continues  its  course,  also  following  a  generally  southern 

The  more  westerly  of  the  two  divergent  branches  of  the 
Anti-Lebanon,  the  one  lying  on  the  western  side  of  AVadi  et 
Teim,  pursues  a  general  south-westerly  direction,  and  is  lower 
and  longer  than  the  other :  it  runs  alonsr  the  south-east  side  of 
the  basin  of  the  Litany,  separating  the  Hasbany  branch  from 
it,  but  without  having  any  distinctive  appellation.  South-west 
of  Hasbeya,  at  the  point  where  the  Litany  dashes  in  the  wildest 
manner  through  the  south-western  Lebanon,  this  parallel  spur 
of  the  Anti-Lebanon  seems  to  press  so  hard  upon  it,  that  only 
a  narrow  ravine,  as  it  were,  is  left  between  the  perpendicular 
crags  ;  and  through  this  ravine  the  Litany  urges  its  tortuous 
way,  its  dominant  course  being  north-west  towards  Tyre.  The 
Jordan  branch  of  Hasbeya,  on  the  contrary,  runs  south-easterly 
from  this  low  spur  of  the  Anti-Lebanon,  its  course  being  away 



from  the  sea,  and  mvinff  the  first  hint  of  the  existence  of  that 
great  sunken  inland  basin  of  the  Jordan.1 

With  this  double,  and  even  triple,  breaking  of  the  Litany 
in  a  place  whose  geological  peculiarities  seem  to  indicate  a 
violent  convulsion  in  the  mountain  chain,2  the  lofty  Leba¬ 
non,  the  western  chain  of  the  two  parallel  ranges,  comes  to 
its  maximum  elevation.  It  continues  its  course  for  some  dis¬ 
tance  toward  the  south,  a  long  broad  line  of  hills  traversing 
northern  Galilee,  and  bounding  the  basin  of  el-Huleh  on  the 
west.  These  sometimes  rise  to  a  considerable  elevation,  and 
sustain  plateaus  even  3000  feet  above  the  level  of  the  sea, — 
those  of  Benit,  Hunin,  and  Safed,  for  example.  The  range 
comes  to  an  abrupt  termination  in  the  hills  of  Nazareth,  which 
decline  steeply  to  the  plain  of  Esdraelon.  Here  the  Lebanon 
system  may  be  said  to  close. 

The  mighty  Jebel  es  Sheikh  or  Hermon,  in  like  manner, 
does  not  abruptly  terminate  the  Anti-Lebanon  range,  but 
serves  as  a  point  of  transition  to  a  row  of  low  broad-backed 
hills  running  directly  southward,  shutting  in  the  Lake  Huleh 
lowlands  on  the  east,  as  Jebel  Safed  does  on  the  west.  This 
row  of  hills,  which  Burckhardt  traversed  throughout,  is  called 
Jebel  Heish.3  It  is  separated  by  the  plateau  of  Jolan  (Gau- 
lanitis)  on  the  south-east  by  a  patch  of  stony  land,  an  hour’s 
distance  across,  in  which  the  Arabs  often  take  refuge  from  the 
exactions  and  impressments  of  the  pashas.  Jebel  Heish  runs  as 
far  southward  on  the  east  of  el-Huleh  as  Jebel  Safed  on  the 
west  (as  Abulfeda  stated4  with  entire  accuracy),  terminating  at 
the  northern  extremity  of  Lake  Tiberias,  the  Tell  el  Faras,  three 
and  a  half  hours  north  of  the  Sheriat  or  Hieromax,  being  the 
last  eminence  of  the  range.  Here,  with  the  steep  crags  north 
of  Om  Keis,  the  open  country  of  Jolan  (Gaulanitis)  terminates, 
and  Bashan  (Batanea)  begins.  The  commencement  of  the 
Batanean  uplands  is  indicated  by  the  southern  chain  of  Wostye, 
and  yet  farther  south  el-Adjelun,  regarding  which  Burckhardt 

1  E.  Robinson,  in  Bib.  Sacra ,  New  York  1843,  p.  14  ;  together  with 
the  sketch  entitled,  Country  around  the  Sources  of  the  Jordan. 

2  C.  de  Bertou,  Mem.  sur  la  depression ,  etc.,  in  Bulletin  de  la  Soc.  geocj. 
de  Paris ,  1839,  T.  xii.  p.  140. 

3  Burckhardt,  Tran.  p.  287. 

4  Abulf.  Tab.  Syr.  ed.  Koehler,  p.  1G3. 



remarks  that  it  would  be  entirely  incorrect  to  connect  these 
southern  ranges  with  the  more  northerly  one  of  Jehel  Heisli.1 
We  have  as  yet  hut  meagre  details  regarding  the  altitude  of 
the  ranges  and  separate  mountains  alluded  to  above ;  but  the 
practised  eye  of  my  friend  Russegger2  has  determined  approxi¬ 
mately  the  height  of  some  of  the  leading  points.  From  him  I 

quote  the  following  details  : — 


Height  of  Jebel  es  Sheikh  (Anti-Lebanon),  .  .  .  9500 

,,  Ajlun,  east  of  the  Jordan  valley,  .  .  .  6000 

,,  Jolan  (in  Gaulon), .  5000 

,,  Plateau  of  Hauran, .  2500 

,,  Valley  of  Hasbeya, . 1800 

,,  the  Peak  of  Jebel  es  Sheikh,  seen  from  Tiberias,  8500 

Highest  Peak  of  Jebel  el  Druz, .  6000 

We  have  now  closed  our  sketch  of  the  mountain  land 
adjacent  to  and  connected  with  Ilermon,  or  Jehel  es  Sheikh. 
From  this  diversified  district  flow  the  various  streams  which 
feed  the  upper  Jordan,  all  of  them  advancing  towards  a  common 
centre,  the  basin  of  el-Huleh,  and  that  portion  of  the  sacred 
river  which  lies  north  of  Lake  Tiberias. 

2.  The  east  side  of  the  Ilermon  system ,  with  the  two  main  roads 
which  lead  from  Banias  to  Damascus. 

Burckhardt  has  displayed  the  physical  character  of  the 
district  indicated  in  the  above  heading.  The  central  point 
which  he  selects  to  group  the  objects  of  geographical  interest 
is  Kanneytra,  which  lies  on  the  main  caravan  route  from  Lake 
Tiberias  to  Damascus,  one  hour’s  distance  east-south-east  from 
Banias,  and  the  residence  of  an  aga.  It  gives  its  own  name, 
el-Kanneytra,  to  all  the  country  south  of  Ilermon. 

There  are  two  main  roads3  which  lead  from  Banias  to  Damas¬ 
cus,  along  the  eastern  slope  of  Ilermon  and  the  Anti-Lebanon 
system.  The  more  southerly  one  of  the  two  runs  by  way  of 
Kanneytra  and  Sasa,  and  is  the  one  selected  by  all  caravans  of 
pilgrims  going  from  Jerusalem  to  Damascus  and  Aleppo,  al¬ 
though  it  is  exposed  to  the  incursions  of  the  Arabs,  from  its  more 

1  See  the  corrected  drawing  in  Berghaus  and  Kiepert’s  Atlases. 

2  Russegger,  Reise,  iii.  pp.  211-217. 

3  Burckhardt,  Trav.  pp.  43-47. 



open  character.  The  more  northerly  lies  closer  to  the  mountains, 
and  is  in  part  overhung  by  them.  Burckhardt  speaks  of  them 
both  in  detail,  as  he  took  the  northern  one  on  his  way  to 
Damascus,  and  the  southern  one  on  his  return  two  years  later. 

The  Northern  Boute. — He  found  it  a  three  days’  journey 
from  Banias  to  Damascus.  Leaving  the  former  city  and  its 
plain,  he  passed  behind  its  old  fortress,  and  ascended  the 
mountain  ridge  of  Jebel  Ileish,  going  by  a  number  of  huts 
belonging  to  the  fellahs  of  Banias,  who  in  summer  tend  their 
herds  upon  the  uplands,  and  make  cheese  for  the  Damascus 
market,  but  in  winter  withdraw  into  their  villages  again. 
After  the  first  hour  and  a  half  he  reached  a  spring,  a  short 
distance  beyond  which  lies  the  ruined  city  of  Hazuri,  which 
had  never  been  visited  by  any  traveller.1  The  mountains, 
covered  with  pasture  land  and  forests  of  oak,  run  north¬ 
easterly  for  another  hour’s  distance,  to  the  village  of  Jubeta, 
where  live  fifty  Turkish  and  ten  Greek  families,  which  sup¬ 
port  themselves  by  cultivating  olives  and  tending  cattle,  and 
which  belong  to  the  domain  of  Hashbeya.  Here  Burckhardt 
spent  the  first  night.  The  neighbourhood  abounded  in  wild 
swine  ;  but  wolves,  bears,  wild  goats,  and  the  common  panther, 
were  not  seldom  seen.2  The  skin  of  the  latter  is  very  much 
prized  by  the  Arabs  for  saddle-covers.  Burckhardt  heard  that 
there  were  many  ruins  in  the  neighbourhood,  but  left  it  to  some 
future  traveller  to  explore  them.  Their  names  are  Dara, 
Bokatha,  Bassida,  Aluba,  Afkerdowa,  and  Hauratha.  These 
seem  to  be  the  largest,  and  still  exhibit  walls  and  arches.  Less 
important  ones  are  Enzuby,  Hauarit,  Kleile,  Emteile,  Meshe- 
refe,  Zar,  Katlube,  Kfeire,  Kafua,  and  Beit  el  Berek. 

The  second  day’s  march  brought  Burckhardt,  after  three- 
quarters  of  an  hour’s  journey,  to  the  village  of  Mejel,  in¬ 
habited  by  three  or  four  Christian  families,  while  the  remainder 
of  the  population  consists  of  Druses.  These  affiliate  in  part 
with  the  Christians  and  in  part  with  the  Mohammedans,  keep¬ 
ing  the  fast  of  Bamadan,  and  imitating  closely  the  example  of 
the  Druse  emir  of  the  Lebanon,  whose  plastic  faith  permits 
him  to  keep  a  Latin  confessor  in  his  house,  and  to  visit  the 

1  Gesenius’  ed.  of  Burckhardt,  i.  p.  98. 

2  Von  Schubert,  Reise  in  Morgenl.  iii.  p.  119.  See  Gesenius’  note  to 
Burckhardt,  i.  p.  99. 



mosques  when  he  is  in  Damascus.  The  village  lies  upon  a 
small  plain,  which  crowns  one  of  the  moderately  high  hills. 
The  place  is  well  suited  to  building,  and  has  an  abundance 
of  springs.  After  an  hour’s  journey  Burckhardt  passed  the 
highest  point  of  the  eminence,  which  is  in  part  composed  of 
limestone  and  in  part  of  a  porous  tufa,  softer  than  that  in  the 
valley  of  el-Huleh.  Oak  is  the  prevailing  wood  ;  but  there  is 
a  tree — Khukh  ed  dib,  i.e.  Bear-plum — whose  fruit  is  very 


An  hour  and  a  quarter  farther  towards  the  north-east  he 
came  to  the  Beit  el  Janne,  i.e.  House  of  Paradise,  situated  in 
a  narrow  wadi,  at  a  place  where  the  valley  opens  a  little  ;  on 
the  west  side  of  it,  several  sepulchres  are  hewn  out  of  the 
chalky  cliff.  A  quarter  of  an  hour  farther  on  is  a  copious 
spring,  called  by  the  name  of  the  village,  and  supplying  water 
enough  to  turn  a  mill.  A  half-hour’s  walk  eastward  brings  one 
to  the  foot  of  the  mountain  land. 

From  this  point  the  way  bore  east-north-east,  having  the  open 
land  of  Jolan  on  the  right,  and  the  chain  of  the  Heish  on  the 
left,  along  whose  base  Burckhardt  continued  his  journey  for  the 
rest  of  the  day,  to  the  village  of  Ivfer  Hauar.  On  the  eastern 
slope  of  the  range  lie  a  number  of  villages.  The  road  passes  by 
a  pile  of  stones  twenty  feet  long,  two  feet  high,  and  three  wide, 
bearing  the  name  of  Nimrod’s  tomb.  In  the  time  of  Pococke,1 
who  travelled  from  Damascus  hither  in  order  to  examine  this 
monument,  there  seemed  to  have  been  some  walls  like  those 
of  a  temple,  fifteen  feet  square.  At  each  end  there  still  stands 
a  great  stone,  and  the  whole  structure  did  not  seem  to  Burck¬ 
hardt  different  from  Turkish  graves  in  general.  On  the  right, 
an  hour  and  a  half’s  distance  away,  lies  Sasa,2  a  station  on  the 
southern  route  to  Damascus.  A  half-hour’s  distance  from 
Kfer  Hauar,  and  after  passing  a  couple  of  little  towers,  the  first 
one  of  which  lies  upon  a  hill,  is  the  Druse  village  of  Beitima, 
where  Burckhardt  spent  the  second  night.  Cotton  is  cultivated 
throughout  the  entire  neighbourhood.  On  the  third  day’s 
march  an  hour  brought  him  to  the  village  of  Katana.  The 
road  winds  along  by  the  side  of  Jebel  Heish,  but  subsequently 
bears  away  from  the  Damascus  road  northward.  The  stream, 

1  Rich.  Pococke,  Description  of  the  East ,  Ger.  trans.  1771,  Pt.  ii.  p.  187. 

2  Koehler,  Note  111,  in  Abulfed.  Tab.  Syr.  p.  100. 



whose  source  is  found  near  the  village  above  mentioned,  where 
it  waters  extensive  gardens,  runs  eastward  from  the  chain  to  the 
great  plain  of  Damascus.  At  the  north-east  the  range  receives 
another  name,  Jebel  el  Jushe;  but  in  the  neighbourhood  of 
Damascus  Jebel  Salehie  takes  its  place,  or  rather  serves  as  a 
western  link  to  bind  it  to  Jebel  es  Sheikh.  At  Refer  Susa  the 
gardens  of  Damascus  begin. 

The  southern  road  from  Damascus,  by  way  of  Lasa  and 
Kanneytra  to  Jacob’s  Bridge,  below  Lake  el  Huleh.1— This  route 
was  traversed  quicker  than  the  former,  in  two  days’  journeys, 
or  rather  in  twenty  hours. 

The  first  day’s  march. — From  Refer  Susa,  south-west  to 
Sasa,  six  hours.  After  the  first  hour  he  passed  the  village  of 
Dareya,  where  the  celebrated  gardens  of  Damascus  cease.  It 
w7as  the  time  of  the  corn  harvest,  and  the  season  also  for  irri¬ 
gating  the  cotton  fields,  wdiose  plants  were  to  be  seen  through¬ 
out  the  whole  extent  of  the  broad  plain.2 

In  two  hours  and  a  half,  after  passing  the  little  stream 
flowing  from  the  west  of  Ratana,  the  village  of  Robab,  lying 
at  the  western  extremity  of  a  low  range  of  hills,  was  reached  : 
eastward,  towards  the  high  plain,  are  the  villages  of  Moat- 
taneye,  Jedeide,  and  Artus;  w7hile  west  of  the  road,  and  in  the 
direction  of  the  distant  mountain  chain,  are  el-Ashrafe  and 
Szahbnaya.  Beyond  Robab  the  plain  was  cultivated  for  some 

Farther  on,  in  the  neighbourhood  of  the  Seybarany  river, 
which  flows  from  the  s.w.  and  w.  of  Jebel  Heish  and  es- 
Sheik  n.e.  towards  Damascus,  Burckhardt  found  a  khan 
erected  for  the  accommodation  of  the  great  caravans  which  go 
from  Jerusalem  and  Akka  through  this  district.  When  the 
naturalist  Bove3  arrived  at  this  khan  on  the  river,  he  was  sur¬ 
prised  to  see  a  grove  of  willows  and  poplars,  and  states  that  it 
was  the  only  instance  of  arboriculture  which  he  had  noticed  in 
his  whole  journey  from  Gaza  to  Damascus.  The  road  follows 
the  bank  of  the  river,  traversing  no  green  meadows  however, 

1  Burckhardt,  Trav.  pp.  311-316. 

2  Edrisi  in  Jaubert,  i.  pp.  349-355  ;  Abulfedse  Tab.  Syrix ,  ed.  Koehler, 

p.  100. 

3  Bove,  Naturaliste,  Ilecit.  Tun  Voyage  a  Damas ,  etc.,  in  Bulletin  de  la 
Soc.  Geogr.  de  Paris ,  1835,  T.  iii.  p.  389. 



but  a  stony  wilderness  bearing  the  name  of  War-ez-Zaky,  and 
used  as  a  place  of  refuge  by  Arabs  when  closely  pursued.  An 
hour  and  a  quarter  farther  on,  several  gravestones  indicate 
the  murders  committed  on  travellers  by  Druses,  who  rush  down 
from  the  neighbouring  heights  of  es-Sheikh,  and  plunder  and 
destroy  all  who  come  in  their  way  and  are  too  weak  to  resist. 
The  Seybarany  here  runs  through  a  deep  bed  of  black  feldspar, 
which  is  so  prevalent  eastward  in  Hauran.  A  half-hour’s  dis¬ 
tance  farther,  a  firm  bridge  crosses  the  stream,  and  the  road 
runs  on  to  Sasa,  a  well-built  village  at  the  foot  of  a  solitary 
hill.  It  has  a  good  mosque  and  a  spacious  khan,  in  which 
Burckhardt  spent  the  night. 

Second  dav’s  march. — From  Sasa  to  Jissr  Beni  Yakub, 
i.e.  Jacob’s  Bridge,  thirteen  hours.  According  to  Schubert’s 
measurements,1  who  took  the  road  leading  from  Damascus  to 
Sasa  in  April  1837,  we  learn  that  a  seven  or  eight  hours’ 
march  is  taken  along  a  moderately  elevated  plateau,  traversed 
by  a  range  of  low  hills,  rising  but  about  six  hundred  feet. 
Schubert  estimated  Damascus  to  lie  2186  Par.  feet  above  the 
sea,  and  the  Khan  el  Sheikh  2455  feet,  and  Sasa  2788  feet, 
— about  six  hundred  feet,  therefore,  higher  than  Damascus. 

Burckhardt  advanced  with  his  little  caravan  from  Sasa 
south-westward,  and  soon  passed  a  little  stream  called  the 
Meghannye,  which  does  not  flow  as  one  would  expect  to  find 
it  doing — north-eastward  to  Damascus — but  south-eastward, 
probably  pouring  its  waters  into  the  Sheriat  or  Hieromax,  and 
thus  into  the  Jordan  in  its  middle  course.  A  bridge  spans  it, 
and  then  there  follows  a  long  reach  of  rocky  land,  at  the  end 
of  which  there  is  a  growth  of  oak,  above  which  Jebel  Heisli  is 
seen  towering.  According  to  the  observations  of  Bove,2  these 
oaks  are  found  mixed  with  pistachio  trees,  often  from  nine  to 
twelve  feet  in  circumference,  whose  branches  the  Arabs  burn 
for  charcoal.  A  half-hour’s  distance  farther  the  road  passes  a 
solitary  hill,  Tell  Jobba,  and  a  tract  of  uncultivated  land;  and 
some  distance  farther  on  a  ruined  khan  called  Kereymbe,  where 
begins  the  ascent  to  the  mountain  called  Heisli  el  Kanneytra. 
This  peak  is  the  true  southern  continuation  of  Jebel  Heisli, 
and  seems  to  attain  no  special  prominence  in  comparison  with 

1  Dr  Steinheil,  Holien-messungen ,  p.  882. 

2  Bove,  i.a.l.  iii.  p.  389. 

17  2 


the  neighbouring  heights,  the  loftiest  one  of  which,  crossed  bv 
Schubert,  was  2815  Par.  feet  above  the  level  of  the  sea.  A 
prominent  isolated  eminence  one  and  a  half  hour’s  distance 
from  the  road  bears  the  name  Tel  Hara.  After  seven  hours 
Burckhardt  reached  Kanneytra,  which  had  been  deserted  by  its 
inhabitants  in  consequence  of  recent  attacks  by  Turkish  troops. 
It  is  surrounded  by  stout  walls,  and  has  a  good  klian  and  a 
handsome  mosque,  tastefully  ornamented  with  granite  columns. 
Copious  springs  are  found  in  the  neighbourhood,  and  on  the 
north  side  of  the  village  there  were  some  ruins  which  caused 
Burckhardt  to  conjecture  that  the  place  was  the  ancient 
Canatha.  Schubert1  doubted  the  truth  of  this  hypothesis,  as 
he  was  not  able  to  discover  any  traces  of  really  antique  struc¬ 
tures.  According  to  him,  the  khan  of  Kanneytra  lies  2850 
feet  above  the  sea,  on  the  Jebel  Heish,  which  seems  to  sink 
rather  than  rise  as  it  runs  north  toward  Jebel  es  Sheikh.  After 
a  few  hours’  rest,  a  direction  was  taken  towards  the  south-east, 
where  the  Tel  el  Khanzyr,  and  to  the  south  Tel  el  Faras,  rise 
as  isolated  peaks  above  the  average  level  of  Jebel  Heish, 
without  attaining  any  important  altitude,  however.  An  abun¬ 
dance  of  pasturage  is  found  to  supply  the  herds  of  the  Beduins 
who  range  through  the  neighbouring  country,  and  who  during 
the  heat  of  summer  ascend  the  heights  of  Jebel  es  Sheikh. 
A  low  growth  of  Valonia  oaks,  accompanied  by  terebinths, 
covers  the  soil  to  an  altitude  of  two  thousand  feet  above  the 

Only  a  half-hour’s  distance  from  Kanneytra,  Burckhardt 
passed  Tel  Abu  Nedy,  with  the  grave  of  the  sheikh  of  the 
same  name.  A  good  hour  s.w.  of  Kanneytra,  he  saw  very 
near  the  road  a  pool  of  water  called  Birket  er  Bam,  a  hundred 
and  twenty  paces  in  circumference,  and  fed  by  two  perennial 
springs.  Huge  heaps  of  stones  in  the  neighbourhood  seem  to 
indicate  the  former  existence  there  of  a  city  a  quarter  of  an 
hour’s  circuit.  Five  minutes’  walk  farther  on,  and  behind  a 
clump  of  oak  trees,  there  is  another  basin  or  pool  excavated 
in  the  black  basaltic  stone,  but  filled  onlv  with  rain-water. 
Beyond  this  the  road  begins  to  assume  a  striking  grade  down¬ 
ward,  leaving  the  mountain  as  it  now  does  :  nine  and  a  half 
hours’  farther  on  there  comes  into  view  on  the  left  a  swampy 
1  Yon  Schubert,  Reise,  iii.  p.  269.  2  Ibid.  pp.  172,  262,  270. 



lake,  Birket  Nefah  or  Tefah,  two  hundred  paces  in  circum¬ 
ference,  near  which  are  to  be  seen  the  traces  of  a  former  canal, 
probably  connected  with  it.  Burckhardt  considered  it  to  be 
the  Phiala  of  Josephus.  Schubert,  who  passed  over  the  same 
road,  only  in  the  opposite  direction,  appears  not  to  have  seen 
this  lakelet  or  pool :  he  speaks  of  descrying,  an  hour  and  a 
half’s  distance  to  the  north-east,  one  bearing  the  name  of  Abu 
Ermeil,  which  seemed  to  be  a  kind  of  gathering-place  for  the 
peasants  of  the  neighbourhood.1  This  Schubert  thought  to  be 
J osephus’  Phiala.  Both  travellers  were  mistaken,  however  :  the 
true  Phiala  lies  much  farther  north  of  this  southern  caravan 
route:2  it  too  bears  the  name  Birket  er  Ram  in  the  mouths 
of  the  local  peasantry.3  I  shall  have  occasion  to  allude  on  a 
future  page  to  the  description  which  Thomson,  as  well  as  Irby 
and  Mangles,  have  given  of  it. 

No  subsequent  traveller  has  alluded  to  the  Birket  Nefah, 
although  the  great  Tell  el  Khanzyr,  a  half-hour  south-west  of 
it,  has  been  mentioned  by  both  Burckhardt  and  Schubert. 
The  ground  is  described  by  them  as  covered  with  the  finest 
pasturage ;  the  grass  was  so  high  as  to  be  almost  impassable. 
Southward,  and  towards  Lake  Tiberias,  the  hilly  country  from 
Tell  et  Taras  to  Fik  or  Feik,  was  intersected  by  several  wadis 
running  down  to  the  lake :  the  caravan  road  turned  from  the 
hill  of  Khanzyr  westward  past  some  springs  to  the  ruins  of  the 
city  Nowaran,4  which  is  named  in  the  history  of  the  Crusades, 
and  of  which  there  still  remain  some  wTalls  and  massive  hewn 
stones.  These  are  found  near  a  fine  spring  surrounded  by  walnut 
and  oak  trees ;  from  this  spot  a  fine  view  is  gained  of  the 
snow-covered  Hermon.  At  Tell  Nowaran  begins  the  scarcely 
perceptible  ascent  over  the  basaltic  formation,5  which,  however, 
cannot  be  said  to  assume  the  definite  features  of  a  mountain 
chain.  This  district,  covered  with  the  finest  pasturage  east¬ 
ward  to  the  river  Meghannye  already  named,  only  one  hour 
west  of  Sasa,  the  TEnezeh  Beduins  seized  in  1843,  and  over¬ 
ran  it  with  their  flocks  and  herds,  which,  according  to  Wilson’s 

1  Von  Schubert,  Reise ,  iii.  p.  265. 

2  See  its  true  position  in  Kiepert’s  map. 

3  Seetzen  in  Mon.  Corresp.  xviii.  1808,  p.  343. 

4  Wilken,  Gesch.  der  Kreutzziige ,  ii.  p.  687. 

5  Wilson,  Lands  of  the  Bible ,  ii.  pp.  318-324. 



estimate,  comprised  thirty-five  thousand  camels.  This  multi¬ 
tude,  greater  than  he  had  ever  seen,  and  which  called  forth 
from  the  Turkish  guard  at  Jacob’s  Bridge  the  comparison  of 
them  with  swarms  of  grasshoppers  covering  the  land  (com¬ 
pare  Judg.  vi.  5),  reminded  Wilson  of  the  promise  contained 
in  Isa.  lx.  6,  whose  fulfilment  seems  to  lie  in  a  still  remote 

From  this  plateau,  which  Schubert  estimated  to  be  2800 
feet  above  the  sea,  Burckhardt  descended1  to  Jacob’s  Bridge 
(Jissr  Beni  Yakub),  where  the  Jordan  flows  through  a  narrow 
bed.  The  road  at  first  winds  gently  down,  till,  at  about  a 
quarter  of  an  hour’s  distance  from  the  bridges,  it  plunges 
suddenly  into  the  valley.  This  account  agrees  well  with  that 
given  by  Schubert.2  From  Jacob’s  Bridge,  which,  according 
to  the  latter  authority,  lies  three  hundred  and  seventy-eight 
feet  beneath  the  level  of  the  Mediterranean,  the  ascent  to  the 
top  of  the  steep  cliffs  on  the  east  side  of  the  Jordan  is  extremely 
difficult,  requiring  three-quarters  of  an  hour’s  toilsome  climbing 
to  reach  the  plateau  bearing  the  name  of  Medan,  which  lies 
875  feet  above  the  sea,  and  therefore  more  than  1250  above 
the  surface  of  the  Jordan  at  Jacob’s  Bridge. 

These  very  exact  and  instructive  particulars  receive  new 
interest  from  some  observations  of  Dr  Schubert,  who  crossed 
Jebel  Heish  on  his  way  to  Jolan  and  Iturea.  On  the  highest 
peaks  of  this  accessible  range,  covered  everywhere  with  ver¬ 
dure,  he  found  an  abundance  of  Salvia  Indica ,  shedding  its 
delightful  perfume  all  around,  and  blooming  in  all  its  beauty  : 
in  the  azerole  thorn-bushes  which  flourished  between  the  oaks 
and  the  terebinths,  the  nightingales  were  singing  their  songs 
of  spring.  In  the  direction  of  Jolan,  his  eye  feasted  on  the 
green  of  fair  clumps  of  trees,  and  on  the  snow-white  summit 
of  Hermon  at  the  north. 

On  the  following  morning,  the  sky  being  remarkably  clear, 
the  massive  mountain  just  named  was  so  distinctly  discerned, 
that  it  did  not  seem  credible  that  it  could  be  eight  hours’ 
distance  away,  as  it  really  was.  A  cold  wind  swept  up  from 
Lake  Tiberias,  confirming  the  estimated  height  of  Kanneytra 
above  the  sea,  2850  feet. 

1  Burckhardt,  Trav.  p.  315. 

2  Yon  Schubert,  Beise,  iii.  pp.  261-2C5. 


1  rp 


The  caravan  road  to  Sasa  offers  no  special  object  of  interest, 
with  the  exception  of  a  frightful  barren  tract  of  basalt  rock,  over 
which  a  broad  highway  has  been  constructed,  probably  since 
Burckhardt’s  time.  This  crosses  a  stone  bridge  before  enter¬ 
ing  the  castellated  village  of  Sasa,  supplied  with  its  khan  and 
bazaar.  The  place,  lying  among  willows,  poplars,  and  walnuts, 
bears  the  marks  of  a  comparatively  recent  earthquake.  The 
last-named  tree  ( juglcins  regia),  which  is  found  all  the  way 
from  the  plains  of  central  Europe  eastward,  through  southern 
Turkey,  Asia  Minor,  and  to  the  district  east  of  the  Aral, 
thrives  in  this  part  of  Palestine  at  a  height  of  from  2000  to 
3000  feet. 

Farther  on  the  road  from  Sasa  to  Damascus,  along  the 
shore  of  the  Seybarany,  in  the  region  where  cotton  is  cultivated, 
the  poplar  groves  were  filled  with  swarms  of  bee-eaters  ( merops 
apiaster),  nightingales  filled  the  air  with  their  song,  and  beetles 
were  creeping  over  the  ground.  The  wind  was  cold,  the  ther¬ 
mometer  had  fallen  as  low  as  3°  K. ;  and  even  as  late  as  the 
26th  of  April,  the  young  walnut  sprouts  were  touched  with 
the  frost  in  the  gardens  of  Khan  es  Sheikh,  on  the  shore  of  the 
Seybarany,  2455  feet  above  the  sea. 

3.  The  intermediate  Cross  Road ,  that  of  the  ancient  Via  Romana , 
from  Damascus  to  Banias ,  passing  Lake  Phiala.  Gathered 
from  the  accounts  of  Irby  and  Mangles ,  Tipping ,  and 
Thomson . 

Had  it  not  been  for  the  discovery  in  February  1818,  by 
Irby  and  Mangles,1  of  a  third  and  more  direct  route  still 
between  Banias  and  Damascus,  we  should  have  still  remained 
in  doubt  regarding  the  locality  of  Phiala.  Their  discovery, 
supported  as  it  has  been  by  the  statements  of  subsequent  tra¬ 
vellers,  has  put  the  question  almost  beyond  a  doubt. 

Irby  and  Mangles  left  Damascus  on  the  23d  of  February, 
and  at  the  end  of  their  first  day’s  march  reached  Sasa,  a  place 
already  alluded  to.  From  this  point  they  took  a  road  to  which 
Burckhardt  had  made  no  allusion,  lying  between  the  two  taken 
and  described  by  him,  and  entering  Banias  on  the  south  side  of 
the  old  castle. 

1  Irby  and  Mangles,  Travels ,  London,  Letter  iv.  ;  comp.  Robinson, 
Bib.  Research,  ii.  pp.  437-440. 



The  second  day’s  march  from  Damascus,  from  Sasa  to 
Banias. — The  first  part  of  the  journey  followed  a  winding  stream, 
unquestionably  the  Meghannye,  alluded  to  by  Burckhardt, 
through  a  fertile  plain,  watered  by  several  brooks,  and  dotted 
with  the  ruins  of  a  number  of  mills.  The  ascent  then  began 
over  a  rough,  rocky,  and  barren  tract,  displaying  in  some  places 
the  remains  of  a  paved  road,  which  seemed  to  be  a  Roman 
via  militarise  once  extending!:  in  a  direct  line  from  Damascus  to 
Csesarea  Philippi,  and  built  perhaps  by  the  tetrarch  Philip,  to 
whose  activity  in  that  part  of  the  country  Josephus  alludes. 
West  of  Banias,  Professor  Hanel1  discovered  in  1847  traces  of 
an  ancient  road  running  to  the  chief  seaports.  The  loftiest 
peak  of  Jebel  Sheikh  is  seen  towering  in  the  distance.  Snow 
was  on  the  ground  at  the  time  of  Irby  and  Mangles’ 
visit,  and  in  such  depth  that  it  was  difficult  to  traverse  the 
country  with  horses.  Yet  by  and  by  the  road  became  more 
passable,  the  rocky  district  began  to  assume  a  smoother  aspect, 
the  stones  being  piled  up  in  heaps,  in  order  to  reclaim  the 
pasture  land,  on  which  flocks  of  goats  were  seen  feeding :  the 
first  bushes  displayed  themselves,  increasing  in  number,  size, 
and  grace  as  the  travellers  w-ent  westward,  and  descended  into 
a  small  but  fruitful  plain,  lying  exactly  at  the  foot  of  Jebel  es 
Sheikh.  The  grave  of  a  Mohammedan  saint  was  seen  lying- 
in  the  basin  of  a  little  stream,  which  seemed  to  rise  in  the 
mountains,  and  to  run  from  east  to  west.  It  was  plain,  there¬ 
fore,  that  the  travellers  had  passed  the  watershed  of  Jebel 
ITeish  (the  southern  continuation  of  es-Sheikh),  between  the 
valley  of  Damascus  in  the  east  and  Jordan  in  the  west. 

Yet  it  was  necessary  to  ascend  from  this  plateau  to  the 
higher  land  at  the  south.  On  the  way  they  soon  passed  a  little 
village,  and  were  almost  immediately  afterwards  surprised  by 
the  discovery  close  by  them,  on  the  left,  of  a  little  round  lake, 
very  picturesque  in  situation,  about  an  English  mile  in  circum¬ 
ference,  surrounded  by  wooded  cliffs,  without  any  apparent 
outlet,  the  water  very  clear,  still,  and  covered  with  water  birds, 
recalling  at  once  the  Phiala  of  Josephus,  and  his  conjecture 
that  it  is  the  true  source  of  the  Jordan.  This,  however,  it 
cannot  possibly  be. 

1  Dr  G.  Hanel,  Eeisetagebuch ,  in  Z.  d.  deutsch.  morgen.  Ges.  vol.  ii. 
p.  430. 



A  short  distance  from  the  round  lake,1  a  brook  was  crossed, 
which  flows  into  a  stream  of  some  length,  along  whose  bank  the 
travellers  proceeded  a  considerable  way,  till  they  reached  the 
old  fortress  of  Banias,  a  lofty  Saracen  citadel.  Their  eyes  were 
soon  gladdened  by  the  sight  of  the  noble  valley  in  which  the 
city  lies,  and  of  the  distant  Lake  el  Huleh.  Descending  into 
the  vale,  beautified  with  its  diversified  kinds  of  shrubs,  covered 
with  a  thick  carpet  of  grass,  and  displaying  here  and  there 
blooming  fields  of  beans  and  corn,  they  passed  from  winter  to 
spring.  The  climate  was  entirely  unlike  that  which  they  had 
lately  experienced  on  the  Damascus  plateau,  on  the  heights  of 
Jebel  Heish,  and  the  elevated  plain  of  Jolan,  and  the  soft  air 
itself  testified  that  the  travellers  had  reached  the  deep  valley  of 
the  Jordan.  They  reached  the  city  about  five  in  the  afternoon; 
but  before  entering,  they  had  to  follow  for  some  distance  a 
little  stream2  which  came  from  Jebel  es  Sheikh  at  the  north, 
and  which  played  and  roared  along  in  the  wildest  manner 

Note. — Pldala  the  true  source  of  the  Jordan ,  according  to 
Josephus  :  Seetzeri  s  Birket  el  Ram.  No  Jordan  source 
according  to  the  observations  of  Thomson. 

Had  it  not  been  for  the  results  of  the  most  recent  investi¬ 
gation,  many  doubts  would  rest  upon  the  locality  of  Lake 
Phiala,  which  has  been  the  subject  of  so  many  discussions 
since  the  time  of  Josephus, — Burckhardt  assigning  it  one  place, 
Schubert  another,  and  Seetzen  still  another ;  but  the  latest 
inquiries  have  made  it  certain  that  it  was  the  round  and 
nameless  lake  which  is  mentioned  in  the  narrative  of  Irby 
and  Mangles.  Kiepert3  has,  with  his  usual  exactness,  placed 
it  in  its  true  position  upon  his  map  of  Palestine  ;  but  he  has 
been  unable  to  give  it  any  name,  saving  that  which  Josephus 

The  latter  states  (de  Bell.  Jud.  iii.  10,  7),  that  the  true 
source  of  the  Jordan  was  at  Lake  Phiala.  He  describes  its 
exact  position  in  relation  to  Coesarea  Philippi,  and  its  distance 

1  See  representation  of  this  in  Iviepert’s  map. 

2  See  Burckhardt ;  also  Thomson,  Bib.  Sac.  iii.  p.  187. 

3  Kiepert’s  Mem.  to  his  map. 

VOL.  II. 




from  it.  Its  name  he  derives  from  its  circular  or  wheel-like 
form.  Its  water,  he  asserts,  never  rises  or  falls.  He  also 
states  that  Philip,  the  tetrarch  of  Trachonitis,  threw  chaff 
into  the  lake,  in  order  to  ascertain  whether  it  had  a  subter¬ 
ranean  outlet,  and  that  it  appeared  at  Panium,  and  proved  the 
existence  of  such  a  passage.  Thus  much  for  the  account  of 

W.  M.  Thomson,1  while  examining  the  country  in  the 
neighbourhood  of  the  castle  of  Banias  in  1843,  learned  from 
his  guide’s  statement,  made  without  any  questioning  on  his 
side,  that  a  conspicuous  group  of  trees,  six  or  eight  miles  to 
the  east,  indicated  the  position  of  a  little  round  lake,  about  two 
miles  in  circumference,  which  has  no  outlet,  and  whose  waters 
never  change  their  height.  He  assured  Mr  Thomson  that  he 
had  often  seen  it.  It  was  too  late  in  the  day  to  visit  the  place  ; 
but  from  the  spot  where  he  stood,  the  physical  impossibility  of 
any  subterranean  communication  between  this  little  round  lake, 
which  his  guide  called  Birket  er  Ram,  and  the  grotto  at  Panium 
was  apparent. 

His  guide  went  on  to  point  out  to  him,  up  the  sides  of 
Hermon,  and  five  hours’  distance  away,  a  place  called  Sheba, 
not  very  far  from  the  snow  masses  of  the  great  Jebel  es 
Sheikh,  a  rock  cavern,  through  which  the  Banias  river  runs  : 
he  asserted,  moreover,  that  chaff  had  been  thrown  in  there,  and 
that  it  had  appeared  at  the  Banias  spring.  There  was  no  im¬ 
possibility  in  the  way  of  this  story,  which  probably  is  some  often- 
repeated  tradition  of  the  place.  Mr  Tipping,2  a  landscape  painter, 
who  was  taking  sketches  in  the  year  of  Thomson’s  visit,  for 
the  purpose  of  illustrating  an  edition  of  Josephus,  visited  this 
place,  called  Sheba,  and  found  it  as  described,  far  up  the  sides  of 
Jebel  Sheikh,  and  just  below  the  masses  of  snow  which  always 
cover  its  summit.  It  was  a  little  basin,  only  about  two  hundred 
and  sixty  paces  in  diameter,  filled  not  by  springs,  but  by  the 
melting  of  snow  water.  In  the  summer  it  is  dry.  All  the 
circumstances  showed  him  that  it  could  not  be  the  source  of  the 
perennial  Panium.  He  also  visited  the  other  basin,  Birket  er 
Ram,  and  found  its  position  to  coincide  exactly  with  the  state- 

1  Thomson,  The  Sources  of  the  Jordan ,  l.c.  Bib.  Sacra ,  vol.  iii.  p.  189. 

2  Smith  and  Wolcott,  communication  to  the  Bib.  Sac.  1843,  pp. 
13,  14. 



merits  of  Irby  and  Mangles,  and  Seetzen,  and  with  the  location 
assigned  it  upon  Kiepert’s  map. 

A  subsequent  visit  of  Thomson  to  the  Birket  er  Bam,  con¬ 
vinced1  him  that  it  was  unmistakeably  the  Pliiala  of  Josephus, 
but  that  it  cannot  be  the  source  of  the  Jordan.  He  took  his 
way  thither  over  a  high  mountain,  and  then  across  a  plain 
covered  with  lava,  traversed  by  a  brook  which  ran  south-west- 
wardly,  and  flowred  into  el-Huleh.  The  distance  of  the  Birket 
from  the  old  fort  of  Banias  is  about  three  miles,  and  the  direct 
distance  from  the  Banias  spring  is  about  a  three  hours’  walk. 
The  round  form  of  the  pool  or  basin  suggested  the  thought 
that  it  had  been  formed  by  volcanic  agency.  The  edge  is 
about  eighty  feet  above  the  water  line.  The  lakelet  is  about 
three  miles  in  circuit.  It  was  very  difficult  to  clamber  down 
the  steep  sides ;  but  having  done  so,  he  found  the  water  in 
many  cases  full  of  rank  reeds,  seemingly  shallow,  and  covered 
with  ducks.  There  was  neither  inlet  nor  outlet  to  be  perceived, 
and  the  water-marks  seemed  to  indicate  that  its  height  does  not 
vary  through  the  year.  The  water  cannot  be  drunk,  whereas 
that  of  the  Banias  spring  is  cool,  clear,  sweet,  and  delicious. 
The  pond  is  full  of  leeches  ;  and  fishermen  have  taken  from 
six  to  eight  thousand  during  a  single  day.  This  creature  is 
unknown,  however,  at  the  Banias  spring.  The  amount  of  water 
which  emerges  at  the  latter  place  would  exhaust  the  Birket  er 
Bam  in  a  single  day. 

The  tracing  of  the  J ordan  source  to  the  little  mountain  pool 
of  Sheba  is  just  as  absurd,  since  the  latter,  when  swollen  by 
the  melting  of  the  snows  of  Hermon,  discharges  its  waters 
through  a  visible  outlet,  traversing  the  valley  of  the  Hasbany, 
and  after  running  a  three  hours’  distance,  falls  into  the  gorge 
of  Suraiyib.  A  subterranean  channel  running  southward  is  a 
physical  impossibility. 

The  collections  of  snow  water  on  all  sides  of  the  ice- cl  ad 
summit  of  Jebel  es  Sheikh  have  given  rise  to  a  number  of 
popular  stories,  of  which  those  cited  above  regarding  the  casting 
of  chaff  into  them,  and  finding  it  again  at  Banias,  are  but 
specimens  ;  but  this  much  is  certain,  that  the  account  of  Lake 
Pliiala’ s  being  the  true  source  of  the  Jordan,  told  by  Josephus 
almost  two  thousand  years  ago,  and  remaining  current  up  to 

1  Thomson,  l.c.  iii.  pp.  191,  192. 



our  own  day,  is  now  disproved  for  all  time.  Still,  notwithstand¬ 
ing  the  foolishness  of  many  of  the  popular  traditions  regarding 
these  water-basins  around  Hermon,  the  investigation  into  their 
character  promises  to  be  very  useful  for  agricultural  purposes, 
and  is  highly  to  be  recommended. 

4.  The  west  and  the  south-west  side  of  the  Hermon  system :  the 
Wadi  et  Teim  and  the  Nahr  Hasbany ,  as  far  as  Ard  el 
Huleh  and  Lake  el  Huleh. 

This  mountain  region  exercises  so  great  an  influence  over 
Lake  el  Huleh  (the  waters  of  Merom),  that  it  is  necessary  for 
us  to  enter  into  a  considerable  extent  of  details  regarding;  this 
valley  of  the  upper  Jordan,  which  derives  new  interest,  if  it  be 
connected,  as  it  not  improbably  may  be,  with  the  expedition 
undertaken  by  Abraham  against  Chedorlaomer,  after  that  king 
had  overcome  Lot  and  carried  away  all  his  goods.  We  are  told 
in  the  sacred  narrative  (Gen.  xiv.  15),  that  “when  Abraham 
heard  that  his  brother  was  taken  captive,  he  armed  his  trained 
servants,  bom  in  his  own  house,  three  hundred  and  eighteen, 
and  pursued  them  unto  Dan  ;  and  he  divided  himself  against 
them,  he  and  his  servants  by  night,  and  smote  them,  and  pur¬ 
sued  them  unto  Hobah,  which  is  on  the  left  hand  of  Damascus.” 
Dan  lay  at  the  southern  entrance  of  the  valley  of  Hasbeya, 
through  which  a  mountain  road  leads  in  three  short  days’ 
marches  over  the  chain  of  Anti-Lebanon  (Jebel  es  Sheikh)  to 
Damascus.  The  caravan  road  runs  from  Banias  alone;  the 
eastern  base  of  Hermon.  The  expression,  “  unto  Hobah,  which 
is  on  the  left  hand  of  Damascus,”  affords  the  greater  proba¬ 
bility  that  Abraham  followed  this  mountain  path,  since  the 
village  of  Hoba  or  Choba,  which  Troilo1  visited  in  1666,  lay  on 
the  north-east  of  Damascus,2  and  if  one  took  the  eastern  road, 
must  have  been  on  the  right  hand ;  while  in  coming;  down  the 
mountain  path  of  the  Anti-Lebanon  pass,  and  following  the 
Barada  in  a  south-easterly  direction,  it  must  lie  u  on  the  left 
hand  of  Damascus,”  as  the  Scripture  indicates. 

This  mountain  road,  which  Abraham  probably  followed  on 
his  way  to  meet  Chedorlaomer  at  Hobah,  was  ascended  in  the 
reverse  direction  by  Seetzen  and  Buckingham,  who  left  the 

1  Von  Troilo,  Reisebeschr.  p.  584. 

*  See  this  laid  down  on  Bergliaus’  map. 



usual  north  route  to  Baalbec,  and  the  west  route  to  Beirut,  and 
turned  south-westerly  into  the  deep  valley  of  Rasheya  and 
Hasbeya,  which,  before  Seetzen’ s  journey1  in  January  1800, 
was  almost  wholly  unknown  to  Europeans,  and  which  he  desired 
to  examine  on  this  very  account.  His  narrative  is  brief,  but 
its  deficiencies  have  been  amply  made  good  by  subsequent 

Rasheya  and  Hasbeya,  says  Seetzen,  lie  at  the  western  base 
of  the  majestic  Hermon,  which,  under  the  name  of  Jebel 
Sheikh,  lifts  its  snowy  head  above  all  the  neighbouring  moun¬ 
tains.  This  peak,  which  in  winter  time  is  inaccessible,  he  found 
to  be  composed  of  the  same  limestone  which  formed  the  'whole 
Anti-Lebanon  range.  In  passing  over  the  chain  on  his  way  to 
Rasheya,  he  saw1  in  the  distance  the  Mediterranean,  and  on  the 
west  slope  of  the  range  he  found  in  the  first  village  of  Druses 
and  Christians  the  ruins  of  a  Roman  temple.  One  Ionic 
column  alone,  of  the  most  beautiful  construction,  remained 
standing.2  In  Rasheya,  where  he  arrived  on  the  evening  of  the 
second  day’s  march,  he  was  detained  by  rain  for  several  days. 
He  found  it  situated  upon  the  steep  slope  of  a  rocky  mountain, 
the  seat  of  an  emir,  under  whose  control  were  twenty  villages, 
and  in  whose  territory  the  whole  of  Hermon  lay.  On  the 
23d  of  January  he  continued  his  march  southward  to  Hasbeya, 
five  hours’  distance  avTay.  In  the  mountain  districts  adjacent 
to  both  Hasbeya  and  Rasheya,  he  found  agriculture  much 

The  range  consists  principally  of  limestone,  through  which, 
however,  there  are  dykes  of  a  black  porous  rock,  which  Seetzen 
called  trap.  But  the  most  remarkable  geological  feature 
seemed  to  him  to  be  a  pit  of  asphaltum,  and  which,  though 
used  for  centuries,  appeared  never  to  have  come  under  the 
observation  of  professed  mineralogists.  It  lies  on  the  slope  of 
a  limestone  mountain,  and  discloses  a  number  of  shafts  or  pits, 
which  widen  as  they  descend,  and  from  which  immense  veins 
of  asphaltum  run  into  the  mountain.  These  have  been  partially 
excavated,  and  pillars  have  been  allowed  to  stand, — a  provision 

1  Seetzen,  Letter  from  Acre,  June  16,  1806,  in  Mon.  Corresp.  xviii.  pp. 

2  J.  S.  Buckingham,  Travels  among  the  Arab  Tribes  in  East  Syria , 
Palestine ,  Hauran,  etc.  p.  393. 



all  the  more  necessary,  since  there  has  never  been  any  division 
of  the  mine  into  compartments.  The  roof  is  an  ash-grey  slate, 
eighty  feet  in  thickness.  Seetzen  let  down  a  string  a  hundred 
feet  long  into  the  shafts,  but  could  not  touch  the  bottom ;  he 
was  assured  the  depth  was  twice  as  great.  The  asphaltum  was 
brought  to  the  surface  by  a  windlass  turned  by  oxen  and  men. 
The  stratum  of  asphaltum  had  never  been  bored  through  ;  it 
appeared  to  be  of  great  dimensions.  The  mineral  was  used  as 
a  wash  for  grapes,  to  guard  against  insects,  but  the  greatest 
part  was  sent  to  Europe.  After  two  days’  stay  there,  Seetzen 
went  on  to  Banias. 

Buckingham  pursued  the  same  route,  not  in  the  winter,  as 
Seetzen  had  done,  but  in  the  early  spring,  April  181 6.1  Leaving 
the  paradisaical  valley  of  Damascus,  where  everything  was  in 
the  perfection  of  its  bloom,  he  passed  north-westerly  over  the 
outer  raime  of  Boboch  to  the  Anti-Lebanon.  His  course  was 


up  the  gorge-like  valley  of  the  Barada,  and  the  whole  of  the 
first  day  was  spent  in  the  ascension  of  the  north-westerly  range, 
with  its  wild  crags,  as  far  as  Deir  el  Ekfaire  el  Eeite,  where 
he  spent  the  first  night.  The  view  of  Damascus,  with  its  four 
charming  rivers,  as  he  saw  it  from  the  lowest  part  of  the  range, 
he  mentions  as  indescribably  beautiful. 

On  the  second  day’s  march  he  left  the  regular  north  road 
running  to  Baalbec,  and  turned  south-westward,  traversing 
the  vale  formed  by  the  mountain  brook  Mesenun,  passing 
Demess  and  Keneisy,  in  order  to  enter  the  long  valley  running 
south-westward  from  Basheya  and  Hasbeya.  This  consumed 
the  day  until  two  o’clock.  It  required  fully  three  hours  to 
cross  the  north-eastern  extremity  of  the  long'Jebel  Sheikh,  and 
reach  the  western  descent.  From  the  highest  point  in  the  pass 
he  could  see  the  great  westerly  chain  of  the  Lebanon,  often 
called,  on  account  of  the  number  of  Druses  inhabiting  its  sides, 
the  Jebel  el  Druse  ;  and  he  could  discern  the  whole  Anti- 
Lebanon,  north-east  of  Damascus,  and  south-westerly  to  the 
extremity  of  Hermon. 

At  the  highest  point  of  this  pass,  too,  only  an  hour  west¬ 
ward  of  the  source  of  the  Mesenun,  and  in  the  depth  of  the 
defile,  Buckingham  discovered  a  small  dark-red  patch  of  the 
limestone,  elsewhere  so  common,  in  direct  contact  with  a  group 
1  Buckingham,  Travels ,  chap.  xix.  pp.  384-399. 


1  CQ 

of  loose  masses  of  the  dark  porous  rock  which  is  often  met 

with  in  Hauran,  and  bj  the  shores  of  Lake  Huleli  and  the 

Sea  of  Tiberias.  This  volcanic  rock  seems  to  have  been  thrust, 

dyke-like,  through  the  whole  superincumbent  mass  of  limestone, 

and  to  have  left  these  traces  of  the  former  convulsive  powers 

of  nature.  It  wears  down  in  process  of  time  into  a  fertile  loam 

of  a  dark-red  colour,  which  can  always  be  discerned  from  a 

distance  by  an  experienced  eye.  Buckingham  remarks 1  that, 

independently  of  this  basaltic  rock  found  in  this  gorge-like 

cleft,  the  whole  appearance  of  the  place  was  such  as  to  leave 

no  doubt  in  his  mind  that  the  mountain  had  once  been  rent  by 


internal  volcanic  action. 

Near  the  village  of  Keneisy  he  found  a  small  round  basin, 
oirded  with  a  wall  constructed  with  considerable  artistic  skill. 
The  pool  which  had  once  been  there  was  apparently  used  for 
the  purpose  of  irrigating  the  valley,  which  begins  at  this  point, 
and  descends  in  a  gentle  slope  and  in  a  south-south- westerly 
direction  to  the  farther  side  of  Hasbeya  and  the  plain  north  of 
Lake  el  Huleli.  It  bears  the  name  Wadi  et  Teim  (on  Berghaus’ 
map  Etteine).  Its  upper  portion  forms  the  valley  of  Rasheya,  its 
lower  one  that  of  Hasbeya.  In  it  the  Jordan  begins  its  course. 
An  Arabian  author,  el-Chulil,  who  wrote  in  the  fifteenth 
century,  speaks  of  the  Wadi  et  Teim  as  a  district  belonging  to 
the  province  of  Damascus,  having  three  hundred  and  sixty 
villages,  and  a  dense  population.  This  is  confirmed  by  the 
numerous  ruins  which  are  found  through  the  whole  neighbour¬ 
hood.  Between  the  eleventh  and  the  thirteenth  century  this 
valley  was  first  settled  by  the  Druses,  whose  doctrines  found 
their  first  recognition  in  the  valley  of  Hasbeya.2  Prior  to  the 
diffusion  of  the  peculiar  doctrines  of  these  people,  the  place 
was  called  Teimallah,  and  Temin  in  the  Jihannuma  of  Hadji 

Three  or  four  hours  brought  Mr  Buckingham  down  as  far 
as  Rasheya.  The  spring  had  already  begun  to  exert  its  influ¬ 
ence  even  there  upon  the  corn-fields,  the  olive  plantations,  and 

1  Buckingham,  Travels ,  l.c.  p.  891. 

2  Rosenmiiller,  Anal.  Arab.  iii.  p.  22 ;  and  in  Robinson,  Bib.  JResearch. 
ii.  p.  438. 

3  Yon  Hammer-Purgstall,  in  Journ.  Asiat.  3d  ser.  T.  iv.  p.  483,  sur  les 



the  vineyards  which  adorn  the  valley.  The  European  cuckoo 
sounded  forth  its  spring  song :  the  inhabitants  of  the  mountain 
call  it  by  the  name  of  Jacob’s  bird,1  believing  that  it  is  pro¬ 
claiming  the  praises  of  a  canonized  sultan  Jacob,  whose  grave 
on  a  neighbouring  mountain  was  visited  by  Burckhardt. 
Whether  the  tradition  regarding  this  holy  man  has  any  con¬ 
nection  with  the  patriarch  Jacob,  is  undetermined. 

Kefr  el  Kuk,  a  city  of  three  thousand  Druse  and  Christian 
inhabitants,  ruled  over  by  an  emir,  has  a  round  walled  water 
basin,  of  a  kind  peculiar  to  the  Anti-Lebanon,  and  often  met 
by  travellers  on  both  sides  of  the  range.  Within  the  basin  or 
pool  there  stands  an  upright  Doric  column,  whose  use  seems 
to  have  been  to  show  the  depth  of  the  water,  and  evidently  of 
more  ancient  date  than  other  antiquities  of  the  place,  whose 
pillars,  architraves,  and  arches  display  Greek  inscriptions  indi¬ 
cating  the  dense  population  which  once  inhabited  this  range. 

Rasheya — which  is  built  in  a  terrace-like  form  up  the  sides 
of  the  steep  and  rounding  summit,  the  great  castle  crowning 
the  height — has  a  population  of  from  four  to  five  thousand,  half 
Druses,  half  Greek  Christians.  It  has  no  mosque,  because  no 
Moslems  live  here,  they  having  been  almost  entirely  driven 
away  from  the  mountain.  Two  Greek  churches  and  a  Syrian 
one  were  entirely  filled  on  the  8tli  of  April — a  holy  day — and 
were  profusely  decorated  with  images  and  lamps.  Druses  here, 
as  in  most  parts  of  the  mountains,  live  on  terms  of  amity  with 
the  Greek  Christians,  and  discharge  their  own  mysterious  rites 
and  observances ;  their  girls  and  women  are  distinguished  by 
the  lofty  horn  (the  tandur),  which  they  wear  on  their  heads. 
Above  the  castle  of  Rasheya,  itself  in  a  lofty  position,  towers 
towards  the  south  the  far  higher  snow-covered  summit  of 
Jebel  Sheikh,  whose  ice  extended  even  in  April  within  fifteen 
minutes’  walk  of  the  village.  This  elevated  situation  ensures 
a  great  degree  of  health  to  the  people  who  reside  there,  and 
who  are  distinguished  for  their  fresh  complexions,  their  coral 
lips,  and  the  piercing  black  eyes  of  their  women  and  children. 
The  mountains  close  by  give  refuge  to  many  wild  beasts — such 
as  wolves  and  leopards — just  as  they  did  in  the  days  when 
Solomon’s  Song  was  written  (iv.  8) :  u  Come  with  me  from 
Lebanon,  my  spouse,  with  me  from  Lebanon  :  look  from  the 
1  Buckingham,  Trav.  l.c.  p.  392 ;  Burckhardt,  Trav.  p.  32. 



top  of  Amana,1  from  the  top  of  Shenir  and  IJermon,  from  the 
lions’  dens,  from  the  mountains  of  the  leopards.”  This  lofty 
summit  displays  everywhere  a  high  grade,  except  on  the  south 
side,  where  its  descent  towards  Banias  is  more  gentle;  along  its 
west  side  there  runs  a  low  parallel  chain,  called  the  Jebel  Arbel, 
which  forms  the  western  wall  of  the  long  valley  of  Rasheya 
and  Hasbeya.  It  is,  however,  a  low  range;  and  one  who  stands 
upon  the  loftiest  point  in  Rasheya  can  see  completely  over  it 
to  the  third  parallel  chain  of  the  Lebanon.  The  latter  chain, 
which  in  the  beginning  of  April  was  entirely  covered  with 
snow,  Buckingham  found  to  be  called  by  many  of  the  people 
of  that  vicinity  Jebel  ed  Druse,  although  the  ancient  name  of 
Libnan  or  Lebanon  is  heard  even  yet  in  the  mouths  of  the 
common  people.  Its  white  aspect  completely  corresponds  to 
the  Arabic  word  meaning  Snow  Mountains,  Jebel  et  Teltsh, 
as  it  is  often  called.  The  valley  between  the  Jebel  Arbel  on 
the  east,  and  the  Lebanon  range  on  the  west,  is  that  which  is 
now  known  as  el-Bekaa2  (more  strictly  el-Bohah)  ;  it  is  the 
Coele-Syria  of  Strabo,  and  La  Boquea  of  William  of  Tyre.  In 
it  are  found  the  renowned  ruins  of  Baalbec.  In  a  more  general 
sense,  this  valley  extends  entirely  across  from  the  Lebanon  to 
the  Anti-Lebanon ;  the  intermediate  chain  is  of  very  little 
relative  importance — so  little,  indeed,  that  the  nomenclature  of 
the  peasantry  ignores  it,  for  they  call  the  Lebanon  the  West 
Mountain,  and  the  Anti-Lebanon  the  East  Mountain.3 

On  the  way  from  Rasheya  to  Hasbeya,  which  Seetzen 
traversed  in  five  hours,  but  of  which  he  makes  almost  no  men¬ 
tion,  Buckingham  passed  a  number  of  villages  inhabited  by 
both  Druses  and  Christians.  On  the  way  there  appeared  a 
wild  mountain  stream,  which  rises  above  the  village  of  Kanaby,4 
and  which  seems  to  be  lost  in  the  bottom  of  the  valley.  In  the 
bed  of  this  little  stream  there  appeared  that  same  black  porous 
stone  which  is  found  in  Hauran  and  around  Lake  Tiberias :  at 
first  only  a  wedge-shaped  mass,  of  little  importance,  but  farther 
on  found  in  greater  abundance.  Three  hours  beyond  the  place 
where  Buckingham  discovered  the  basaltic  rock,  he  came  to  the 
source  of  the  Nahr  Hasbany,  an  arm  of  the  Jordan ;  close  by, 

1  Amana,  a  peak  of  this  range.  See  Rosenmiiller,  Bibl.  Alierth.  i.  p.  234. 

2  Kosenm  idler,  Bibl.  Alter th.  i.  p.  236. 

3  Burckhardt,  Trav.  p.  4.  4  Burckhardt,  Trciv.  p.  32. 



on  an  elevation  just  eastward,  stands  the  city  of  Hasbeya. 
Professor  Hanel,  who  passed  over  this  road  in  1847,  found  the 
Druse  villages  upon  it  in  better  condition  than  those  of  the 
Turks  and  Arabs;  the  houses  were  higher,  and  supplied  with 

The  Jordan,  according  to  Buckingham,2  rises  at  the  lowest 
part  of  this  valley,  presenting  itself  at  the  very  source  as  a  great 
basin  of  the  clearest  water,  from  which  it  makes  its  escape  by 
overleaping  a  dam,  and  produces  a  charming  cascade.  A  little 
distance  below,  it  is  spanned  by  its  first  bridge. 

These  general  accounts  have  been  fully  confirmed  by  the 
more  detailed  narratives  of  Burckhardt  and  Thomson,  whose 
courses  of  travel  led  them  over  a  considerable  portion  of  the 
route  taken  by  their  predecessors.  Burckhardt  passed,3  in 
October  1810,  from  the  ruins  of  Baalbec  southward  through 
the  valley  of  Bekaa.  He  passed  the  first  night  at  a  little  Druse 
village  on  the  narrow  crest  of  Jebel  Arbel,  said  by  Eli  Smith 
to  be  not  more  than  a  quarter  of  an  hour’s  walk  across.  The 
next  day  he  entered  the  valley  of  Hasbeya.  It  lies  about  five 
hundred  feet  higher  than  that  of  el-Bekaa,  through  which  the 
Litany  pursues  its  westward  course.  The  spring  which  Buck¬ 
ingham  had  already  described  lies  about  a  half-hour’s  distance 
from  the  village  of  Hasbeya.  .Burckhardt  did  not  visit  it,  but 
Thomson  in  18434 * 6  made  it  the  object  of  special  investigation. 
The  water  bubbles  up  through  the  soft  slimy  bottom  of  a  pool  " 
about  eight  or  ten  rods  in  circumference ;  and  as  it  escapes  it 
is  checked  at  once  by  a  stone  dam,  forming  the  cascade  which 
Buckingham  observed  in  the  winter  time,  but  which  is  not  to 
be  seen  in  the  early  autumn.  The  water  is  abundant,  however ; 
and  below  the  dam  there  is  a  strong  clear  stream,  in  which 
fish  are  plentifully  found.  The  first  five  miles  of  its  course 
is  through  a  narrow  but  very  beautiful  and  highly-cultivated 
valley,  densely  shaded  by  willows,  sycamores,  and  terebinths. 

1  Prof.  Hanoi,  Reisetagebuch ,  i.a.l.  p.  434. 

2  Buckingham,  Travels ,  l.c.  p.  397. 

3  Burckhardt,  Trav.  p.  32. 

4  Eli  Smith,  in  Miss.  Herald ,  vol.  xli.  1845,  p.  17  ;  W.  M.  Thomson, 

The  Sources  of  the  Jordan ,  l.c.  Bib.  Sacra,  vol.  iii.  p.  185. 

6  Compte  de  Bertou,  Mem.  sur  la  depression ,  etc.,  in  Bulletin  de  la  Soc. 
Geogr.  de  Paris,  T.  xii.  p.  139. 



The  stream  then  passes  into  a  deep  deft  of  basaltic  rock;  whence 
it  emerges  into  a  great  plain  of  volcanic  origin,  and  then  sinks 
by  a  series  of  very  gradual  transitions  into  the  morasses  which 
surround  Lake  Huleh.  Entering  the  plain  just  mentioned,  it 
turns  its  direction  a  little  westward,  and  runs  about  ten  miles, 
and  almost  the  same  distance  through  the  swamp  land,  entering 
Lake  Huleh  not  far  from  its  north-west  corner.  During  its 
course  hither  it  receives  a  large  number  of  tributaries — the 
Banias  branch  and  Tel  el  Kadi  on  the  east,  and  the  Mellahah, 
the  Derakit,  and  numberless  little  brooks  on  the  west,  by  which 
its  volume  of  water  is  largely  increased.  The  entire  distance 
from  the  source  to  the  lake  is  about  twenty-five  miles. 

Although  in  the  higher  portion  of  Wadi  et  Teim  there  is 
no  permanent  stream,  and,  as  Thomson  says,  the  channel  which 
is  seen  there  is  dry  for  the  greater  part  of  the  year,  yet  in  the 
rainy  season  there  rushes  down  the  valley  a  great  mass  of 
melted  snow  water,1  which  makes  the  bridge  at  the  source  of 
the  Hasbany  indispensable. 

Burckhardt  describes  Hasbeva  as  having  seven  hundred 

\J  O 

houses,  half  of  them  inhabited  by  Druses,  the  other  half  by 
Christians,  mainly  Greeks  and  Maronites  :  the  number  of  Turks 
and  Nasairites  he  describes  as  very  small.  The  chief  production 
of  the  place  is  olive  oil ;  the  most  prominent  occupation  of  the 
people  the  weaving  of  a  coarse  kind  of  cotton  cloth.  The  lead¬ 
ing  man  in  the  village  was  a  Druse  emir,  dependent  on  the 
Pasha  of  Damascus,  and  having  twenty-one  villages  under  his 
jurisdiction,  which  included  even  Banias.  At  the  time  of 
Thomson’s  visit2  in  1843,  the  emirate  had  passed  into  the 
hands  of  a  Moslem  branch  of  the  house  of  Shehab.  I  shall 
have  occasion  subsequently  to  speak  of  the  government  and 
the  Christian  population ;  I  will  here  merely  subjoin  a  few 
words  on  the  condition  of  the  place  and  its  Jewish  inhabitants 
at  the  time  of  Wilson’s  visit,  April  1843.  According  to  his 
account,  the  town  lies  upon  an  eminence  eight  or  nine  hundred 
feet  high.  The  population  he  estimated  at  five  thousand,  of 
whom  one  thousand  were  Druses,  a  hundred  were  Moham¬ 
medans,  and  four  thousand  Christians.  The  Jews  form  only  a 
small  colony  of  about  twenty  houses  and  a  hundred  souls. 

1  Wilson,  Lands  of  the  Bible ,  vol.  ii.  p.  189. 

2  Missionary  Herald ,  vol.  xl.  xli.  xlii. 



They  all  belong  to  the  Sephardim,  whose  ancestors  immigrated 
from  Austria.  There  are  only  two  or  three  permanent  traders 
among  them  ;  the  other  vendors  of  goods  are  a  kind  of  pedlars, 
whose  main  business  it  is  to  lend  money  to  the  agriculturists, 
taking  their  pay  out  of  the  returns  of  the  harvest.  They  have 
a  synagogue,  but  no  reading-room,  as  in  Tiberias  or  Safed ;  they 
are  by  no  means  a  people  addicted  to  study ;  few  of  them  under¬ 
stand  Hebrew,  and  only  eight  or  ten  can  write.  Their  hakim, 
Abraham  den  David,  was  at  once  butcher,  teacher,  reader  in 
the  synagogue,  and  the  leading  military  man.  Their  taxes, 
which  were  formerly  high — four  hundred  and  fifty  piastres — 
had,  at  the  time  of  Wilson’s  visit,  been  raised  to  three  thousand 
two  hundred  piastres.  The  demand  of  the  Christians  in  Has- 
beva  for  the  Arabic  New  Testament  and  Protestant  writings 
was  very  great,  and  indicated  a  quickened  state  of  religious  life. 
The  Greek  priests  were  exceedingly  incensed  against  the  mis¬ 
sionary,  Wilson,  and  endeavoured  to  persuade  their  people, 
though  without  great  success,  to  return  the  books.  A  Druse 
of  prepossessing  dress  gave  the  assurance,  that  if  the  English 
would  guarantee  protection  to  the  Protestants,  as  the  French 
had  done  to  the  Catholics,  and  the  Russians  to  the  Greeks,  a 
hundred  families  would  at  once  embrace  Protestantism.  He 
expressed  his  wish  that  the  Druses  might  enjoy  Protestant 
schools,  nor  was  he  at  all  reticent  regarding  his  own  religious 
opinions.  The  streets  of  Hasbeya  run  down  the  sides  of  the 
mountain,  where  there  are  no  houses :  all  the  slopes  are  covered 
with  olive  and  mulberry  trees.  The  manufacture  of  silk,  of 
cotton  cloth,  and  olive  oil,  formed  the  chief  occupation  of  the 
inhabitants.  Yet  every  man  has  his  little  garden  or  his  ter¬ 
races  on  the  hill-side ;  and  the  words  of  Micah  (iv.  4)  seem  to 
find  exact  fulfilment  there,  for  each  house  is  overshadowed  by 
its  own  vine  and  fig-tree.  At  the  time  of  Wilson’s  visit  the 
summit  of  Hermon  was  still  covered  with  snow,  and  the  corn 
was  not  yet  in  the  ear.  The  custom  of  cooling  the  drinking- 
water  with  snow  from  the  mountain  exists  unchanged  from  the 
time  of  Solomon  (Prov.  xxv.  13).  Here  Wilson  saw  for  the 
first  time  the  tantur  or  horn  used  as  an  ornament  for  the  head. 
It  is  at  present  only  worn  by  the  women,  especially  the  married 
ones,  but  was  formerly  used  by  men  as  well  (see  Job  xvi.  15  ; 
Jer.  xlviii.  25;  Ps.  cxii.  9,  cxxxii.  17,  and  cxlviii.  14).  An 



antique  gem  also;  which  Wilson  procured  in  Damascus,  dis¬ 
played  the  tantur  now  worn  by  the  Druse  women  upon  a  man’s 

Burckhardt1  describes  the  mineralonical  character  of  Has- 


beya  and  its  vicinity  as  interesting;  in  the  wadi  east  of  the 
town  there  is  found  a  metallic  substance,  which  he  held  to  be  a 
natural  quicksilver  amalgam.  Cinnabar  was  said  to  be  found 
also ;  the  soil  is  rich  in  iron  ;  and  at  a  short  distance  to  the  east 
he  found  massive  deposits  of  bitumen,  which  the  peasantry  sold 
to  merchants  from  Damascus,  Aleppo,  and  Beirut.  Thomson, 
who  visited  the  asphaltum  pits,  considered2  the  amount  of  bitu¬ 
men  inexhaustible,  and  thought  that,  if  managed  with  care, 
they  would  become  very  profitable. 

The  road  leads  in  a  direct  course  from  Hasbeya  over  the 
very  narrow  ridge  which  separates  its  valley  from  that  of  the 
Litany.  It  passes  the  village  of  Kaukaba,  and  emerges  at  the 
hamlet  of  Barghaz,  which  stands  close  by  the  stream,  as  it 
dashes  and  foams  through  its  gorge-like  bed,  spanned  by  an  old 
Homan  bridge.  Perhaps  it  were  more  strictly  true  to  say  that 
below  this  bridge  begins  that  cleft,  impassable  by  the  steps  of 
man,  and  which  the  stream  has  cleft  through  the  rocks  of 
Lebanon,  whose  lofty  peaks  rise  abruptly  on  the  west.  A  half- 
hour  below  Kaukaba,3  and  on  the  Hasbany,  stands  the  khan  of 
Hasbeya,  a  very  large  and  old  caravanserai  of  regular  construc¬ 
tion,  eighty  paces  square,  with  entrances  on  the  east  and  west 
sides,  the  latter  of  which  was  so  overladen  with  inscriptions, 
that  even  an  experienced  eye  could  scarcely  make  them  out. 
The  khan,  as  well  as  the  remains  of  a  once  very  elegant  mosque 
close  by,  give  evidence  of  the  great  depreciation  of  art  in  Syria 
in  the  present  compared  with  former  days.  This  khan  yields 
a  most  unremunerative  rent.  The  market  on  Thursday  is 
attended  by  peasants  from  the  whole  Hasbeya  district,  el-Huleh, 
Belad-Beshara,  Belat-Shukif  on  the  Litany,  Medj-Ayun,  and 
Jezzin.  A  kind  of  pottery,  largely  manufactured  in  the  neigh¬ 
bourhood,  is  offered  for  sale ;  also  the  cotton  and  silk  stuffs  of 
Hasbeya,  horses,  mules,  camels,  donkeys,  fine  sheep,  goats,  oil, 

1  Burckhardt,  Travels ,  p.  33. 

2  Thomson,  l.c.  iii.  p.  186  ;  comp.  Compte  de  Bertou’s  Mem.  l.c.  Bul¬ 
letin ,  xii.  p.  139  ;  Wilson,  Lands  of  the  Bible ,  etc.,  vol.  ii.  p.  191. 

3  Wilson,  Lands  of  the  Bible ,  l.c.  ii.  p.  192. 



butter,  cheese,  and  other  articles.  These  are  displayed  in  slight 
booths  or  on  the  ground.  The  whole  spectacle,  taken  in  con¬ 
nection  with  the  surrounding  landscape,  is  a  very  romantic  one. 

Thomson  was  especially  surprised  to  see  some  fifty  mill¬ 
stones  offered  for  sale,  made  from  the  porous  black  stone  which 
is  used  for  that  purpose  in  Hauran,  and  which  seems  to  be  the 
chief  material  which  makes  up  the  structure  of  the  part  of  the 
mountain  where  the  market  is  held.  Thomson  judged  its 
appearance  to  indicate  that  the  mountain  had  a  volcanic  origin. 
Passing  over  the  stone  bridge  near  by,  he  rode  along  the  banks 
of  the  stream,  following  its  downward  course,  and  soon  came 
to  a  fine  growth  of  wood,  which  stood  forth  in  strong  contrast 
with  the  naked  appearance  of  the  mountain  crags  on  every 
side.  South  of  this  he  entered  an  extensive  olive  grove,  through 
which  the  Hasbany  continued  its  dashing  course  for  the  distance 
of  an  hour  and  a  half ;  but  after  passing  out  of  this  grove,  he 
no  longer  heard  the  music  of  its  waters,  for  it  had  passed  then 
into  the  plain,  and  changed  its  course. 

Buckingham  traversed  the  length  of  the  Hasbeya  valley, 
yet  he  did  not  pursue  the  road  which  leads  along  the  bottom 
of  it,  but  chose  rather  that  which  runs  along  the  top  of 
the  low  ridge1  on  the  west.  After  a  good  day’s  march  from 
Basheya,  he  arrived  at  sunset  at  a  round,  isolated,  cone-shaped 
mountain,  very  like  Tabor  in  its  form,  and  filling  up  somewdiat 
the  Hasbeya  valley.  Upon  it  stands  the  city  Ilibl  el  Hawa, 
smaller  than  Basheya,  and  provided  with  a  good  khan,  from 
whose  gate  the  view  extends  down  the  deep  and  broad  Jordan 
valley  as  far  as  Lake  Huleh.  At  Hibl,  the  habitations  of  the 
Druse  mountaineers  cease,  and  a  new  population  succeeds. 
Burckhardt,  in  his  course  down  the  valley,  followed  the  western 
slope  of  Idermon.  After  the  first  two  hours  he  arrived2  at 
Hereibe,  a  place  that  lies  high  above  the  river,  and  which  is 
surrounded  by  olive  vineyards,  the  fruit  of  which  forms  an 
important  article  of  food  among  the  mountaineers.  West  of 
the  village  stand  the  ruins  of  a  fallen  temple,  twenty  paces 
long,  thirteen  broad,  with  a  vestibule  and  two  columns  still 
standing  upright.  The  inner  apartments  of  the  temple  are  not 
materially  injured  ;  it  still  exhibits  a  number  of  arched  rooms, 

1  Buckingham,  Trav.  l.c.  pp.  898-400. 

2  Burckhardt,  Trav.  p.  34. 



and  the  relics  of  a  staircase  which  formerly  led  to  the  roof,  now 
fallen  in.  From  this  ruin  Burcldiardt  came  in  an  hour  to  the 
spring  Ain  Ferchan,  and  then,  after  ascending  a  mountain, 
three-quarters  of  an  hour  brought  him  to  Basheyat  el  Fuchar, 
a  villa o;e  of  a  hundred  houses.  The  most  of  these  belong;  to 
the  Turks,  the  rest  are  inhabited  by  Greek  Christians.  The 
village  affords  a  magnificent  view  of  the  Ard  el  Huleh,  i.e.  the 
circular  plain  of  that  name  three  or  four  hours  away.  In  the 
distance  Lake  Huleh  can  also  be  seen.  This  village  is  remark- 
able  as  the  place  where  the  pottery  ware,  so  much  valued  in 
the  neighbourhood  for  its  graceful  forms  and  skilful  painting, 
is  manufactured.  It  finds  a  market  not  only  in  Hasbeya,  but 
is  carried  as  far  as  Jolan  and  Hauran ;  almost  every  house  in 
the  village  is  a  small  pottery.1 

Thomson,2 3  after  leaving  the  long  valley  Wadi  et  Teim,  and 
passing  through  the  great  olive  grove  at  the  south  end,  tra¬ 
versed  the  plain  that  lies  there  in  forty-five  minutes.  He  found 
it  covered  everywhere  with  lava,  and  ending  in  a  steep  slope, 
which  led  to  a  second  plain  much  larger  than  the  first,  and 
exhibiting  the  same  traces  of  volcanic  activity.  This  one  he 
found  to  slope  gently  to  the  marshes  around  Lake  Huleh.  His 
course  led  him  eastward  to  Banias,  which  he  reached  in  two 
hours  and  a  half. 

Scattered  over  this  barren  plain,  Thomson  saw  a  few 
stunted  oak  trees,  which,  instead  of  beautifying  the  prospect, 
only  made  it  more  painfully  desolate.  Buckingham’s  account4 
confirms  that  of  Thomson  in  this  regard.  He  too,  in  his 
descent  from  the  fertile  valley,  found  on  the  lava-covered  plain 
not  a  single  olive  tree,  not  a  grape  vine,  and  not  a  corn-field. 
No  houses  were  visible  ;  and  only  a  few  tents  served  as  the 
habitations  of  man.  The  only  people  visible  were  a  few  no¬ 
madic  adventurers  called  Turkomans,  who  in  the  spring  force 
their  way  in  from  Syria,  and,  partaking  of  the  character  of 
both  Turks  and  Arabs,  make  use  of  both  languages.  On 
account  of  their  predatory  habits,  however,  they  are  considered 
a  more  abandoned  race  than  even  the  wild  Beduins.  Crossing 

1  See  also  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  p.  439  ;  and  Major  Robe,  in  Bib. 
Sacra,  1843,  pp.  14,  15. 

2  Thomson,  l.c.  iii.  p.  187. 

3  Buckingham,  Trav.  l.c.  p.  400. 



the  Hasbany,  he  found  it  at  this  season,  the  beginning,  very 
broad  and  deep.  Eastward  he  could  see  the  high  castle  of 

Approaching  this  city,  vegetation  begins  immediately  to 
assume  new  vigour  and  beauty;  the  hundred  brooks  that  dis¬ 
tribute  their  waters  through  its  neighbourhood,  carry  fertility 
everywhere,  and  make  the  place  a  miniature  Eden.  Josephus 
says  of  it,  that  it  affords  a  profusion  of  all  natural  gifts ; 
Seetzen1  alludes  to  the  uncommon  richness  of  its  charms;  and 
Burckhardt  calls  it  rightly  classic  ground;  and  surely  it  is  so, 
for  hither  came  Jesus  Christ  with  His  disciples,  and  taught  in 
the  neighbourhood,  and  loved  to  meet  the  people  who  assembled 
at  the  markets  of  Caesarea  Philippi :  here  He  loved  to  preacli 
the  gospel,  and  to  speak  to  the  multitudes  of  Himself  as  the  Son 
of  the  living  God  (Matt.  xvi.  16  ;  Mark  viii.  27).  The  parable 
of  the  sower  is  invested  with  new  significance  when  read  in  the 
fruitful  corn-fields  which  surround  Banias.  Wilson  discovered2 
in  the  wheat-fields  a  great  number  of  places  destitute  of  grass, 
and  displaying  a  productive  growth  of  a  kind  of  tares,  called 
by  the  Arabs  Zaivctn.  Before  sowing,  the  seed  of  this  is  care¬ 
fully  separated  from  the  grain,  lest  it  grow  up  and  choke  the 
harvest.  This  is  eminently  the  Zizanion  or  Lolium  of  Matt, 
xiii.  25,  which  the  enemy  sowed  among  the  wheat  in  the  night¬ 
time  while  the  master  lay  and  slept.  It  bears  the  same  name 
even  to-day. 

5.  The  source  of  the  Jordan  at  Banias;  the  city  of  Banias ;  the 
Castle  of  Suheibeh ,  and  the  ruins  of  Ha zuri  Hazor. 

Seetzen,  the  first  European  traveller  who  visited  Banias 
since  the  times  of  Abulfeda  and  Brocardus,  gave  a  very  brief 
account  of  his  stay  there  ;  yet  all  that  he  did  narrate  has  been 
fully  confirmed3  by  subsequent  explorers.  The  small  place  ;  the 
abundant  spring  with  its  attractive  rock  grotto ;  the  picturesque 
wall  with  its  Greek  inscriptions,  dedicating  the  place  to  Pan 
and  the  nymphs  of  the  fountain ;  the  charming  environs,  which 
Seetzen  thought4  the  most  interesting  in  all  Palestine, — a 

1  Seetzen,  Mon.  Correspond,  xviii.  p.  343. 

2  Wilson,  Lands  of  the  Bible ,  vol.  ii.  p.  173. 

3  Seetzen,  in  Mon.  Corresp.  xviii.  pp.  343,  344. 

4  Seetzen,  p.  348  ;  Wilson,  Lands ,  etc .,  vol.  ii.  p.  174. 



judgment  in  which  Wilson  coincides ;  the  abundance  of  game 
of  all  kinds  for  the  hunter,  wild  boars,  foxes,  jackals,  gazelles, 
deer,  hares,  wolves,  hyenas,  bears,  and  panthers, — all  of  this  is 
as  Seetzen  years  ago  asserted  it  to  be.  He  was  the  first  to 
ascribe  the  true  origin  of  the  Jordan  to  the  spring  of  Banias,  as 
a  tribute  to  its  beauty  ;  yet  he  did  not  refuse  to  recognise  the 
Hasbany  lying  farther  west  as  a  longer  arm  of  the  river  than 
the  Banias  tributary ;  and  it  is  unquestionable,  that  he  laid 
very  little  stress  on  the  probability  of  a  third  and  intermediate 
stream’s  leading  to  the  head  waters,  the  Tell  el  Kadi,  in  con¬ 
sequence  of  his  want  of  acquaintance  with  it. 

Burckhardt,  who  regrets  the  short  stay  which  he  was  com¬ 
pelled1  by  the  want  of  money  to  make  at  that  place,  has  yet 
given  a  very  exact  account  of  it,  accompanied  with  a  drawing 
of  the  grotto,  and  with  copies  of  the  inscriptions  which  he 
observed  there. 

Banias,  now  a  village  of  about  one  hundred  and  fifty 
houses2  (at  Burckhardt’s  time,  1810,  there  were  only  sixty), 
lies  at  the  foot  of  Jebel  Sheikh,  and  in  a  corner  of  the  plain  of 
Banias.  Its  population  is  mostly  of  Turks  and  Arabs,  yet  there 
is  an  intermingling  of  Greeks,  and  Druses.  The  declivity  of 
the  mountain  is  here  particularly  fruitful,  as  well  as  the  plain 
which  lies  before  it,  and  both  enjoy  the  uncommon  advantage 
of  having  a  dense  growth  of  trees.  The  district  which  is  most 
remarkable  for  its  fertility  extends  half  an  hour’s  distance 
west  of  the  town,  and  is  thickly  dotted  with  ruins,  stone  walls, 
pillars,  capitals,  and  pedestals.  This  place  is  regarded  by 
Wilson  as  unquestionably  a  part  of  the  old.  city  of  Caesarea 

On  the  north-eastern  side  of  the  present  village,  the  Banias 
river  emerges  from  its  source.  That  in  ancient  times  it  re¬ 
ceived  honours  as  the  fountain-head  of  the  Jordan,  is  shown  by 
the  monuments  which  stand  near  it.  Above  the  spring  there 
may  still  be  seen  an  upright  limestone  wall,3  in  which  several 
niches  of  larger  or  smaller  size  have  been  skilfully  excavated, 
and  ornamented  with  volutes.  The  most  of  these  niches  are 

1  Burckhardt,  Trav.  pp.  37-43. 

2  Wilson,  Lands  of  the  Bible ,  ii.  p.  176. 

3  Gesenius’  ed.  of  Burckhardt,  i.  pp.  494-497,  Note  ;  Boeckh  and  Franz, 
Corpus  Inscr.  Grsecar.  vol.  iii.  Fasc.  i.  fol.  244,  Nos.  4537-4539. 

VOL.  II.  N 



now  filled  with  rubbish.  The  lamest  one,  which  is  six  feet 
high,  and  the  same  in  length  and  width,  stands  over  a  spacious 
cavern,  from  which  the  river  flows  ;  still  higher  is  a  second 
niche  decorated  with  pilasters.  At  the  distance  of  twenty 
paces,  and  at  the  foot  of  the  same  rock,  a  couple  of  other  niches 
have  been  hollowed  out:  every  one  bears  its  own  Greek  inscrip¬ 
tion.  In  one  of  them,  which  is  decorated  with  a  profusion  of 
ornaments,  a  portion  of  a  pedestal  for  a  statue  can  be  seen. 
The  almost  illegible  inscriptions  merely  indicate  that  the  place 
was  sacred  to  Pan,  whence  its  name  Panion,  or  Paneion  in 
Josephus,  and  the  later  name  Panias.  They  also  tell  us  that 
a  priest  of  Pan  (probably  officiating  here  in  a  temple  dedicated 
by  Herod  the  Great  to  Augustus)  caused  the  inscriptions  to 
be  engraved.  Philip  the  tetrarch  of  Trachonitis,  to  whom  at  a 
later  period  this  province  was  assigned  by  the  Komans,  built 
the  city,  and  gave  it  the  name  of  Cmsarea  Panias  :  it  was  also 
called  Caesarea  Philippi,  to  discriminate  it  from  the  Caesarea 
Palestina  on  the  sea-coast,  and  is  so  designated  in  Mark  viii. 
27.  Still  later  it  was  enlarged  by  Agrippa,  and  in  flattery  to 
the  Emperor  Nero  was  called  Neronias.  There  is  not  known 
to  have  been  any  older  primitive  name  of  the  place  and  here, 
differently  from  almost  all  the  localities  of  Palestine,  the  Greek 
name  has  not  been  supplanted  by  an  Arabic  corruption2  of  the 
old  name,  but  has  remained  only  slightly  changed  in  form. 
The  Panion  of  Josephus  appears  in  the  Banias  or  Banjas  of  our 
day,  and  in  the  Belinas  of  Benjamin  of  Tudela  and  the  Cru¬ 
saders.  Belaud  has  indeed  started  the  conjecture  that  there  is 
no  such  connection;  that  the  form  of  the  present  word  deceives, 
and  that  it  really  dates  to  the  days  of  the  Phoenician  supremacy. 
An  inscription  which  escaped  the  eye  of  Burckhardt  is  found 
on  the  wall  about  five  feet  above  the  most  eastern  niche,  and 
confirms  the  statement  of  Josephus,  that  Agrippa  decorated 
Panias  with  royal  bounty.  It  was  copied  by  both  Thomson'3 
and  Krafft ;  it  fills  sixteen  lines,  but  it  has  not  been  published. 

Around  the  spring  there  is  a  large  number  of  hewn  stones. 
The  stream  runs  along  the  north  side  of  the  village,  where  are 
still  to  be  seen  a  well-built  bridge  and  some  ruins  of  the  ancient 

1  Gesenius’  ed.  of  Burckhardt,  Note  to  i.  p.  483. 

2  Abulfedse  Tab.  Syr.  in  Koehler,  p.  96. 

3  Thomson,  in  Bib.  Sacra,  iii.  p.  194. 



city,  the  larger  part  of  which  appears  to  have  been  on  the 
farther  side  of  the  river,  where  ruins  are  found  extending  back 
a  quarter  of  an  hour’s  walk.  These  ruins  are  not  found  in 
any  perfect  condition  ;  there  are  no  whole  walls,  only  scattered 
fragments  and  detached  stones,  among  which  one  unbroken 
pillar  was  visible.  In  the  village  Burckhardt  saw  upon  the 
left  a  light-grey  granite  pillar,  of  about  one  and  a  half  feet  in 

The  incompleteness  of  the  narratives  given  by  earlier  travel¬ 
lers  has  been  completely  removed  by  the  full  accounts  of  sub¬ 
sequent  explorers.  Even  Burckhardt  failed  to  describe  with 
any  fulness  of  detail  the  cavern  from  which  the  Banias  spring 
emerges,  but  Thomson1  has  entirely  filled  the  hiatus  in  our 
knowledge.  The  account  given  by  Josephus  of  this  great 
fountain  is  interesting ;  but  its  condition  is  so  much  changed 
since  he  wrote,  that  his  description  no  longer  remains  true. 
He  tells  us  that  when  Herod  the  Great  had  accompanied  Ca3sar 
(Augustus)  to  the  sea  on  his  way  home,  he  built  in  his  honour 
a  splendid  temple  of  pure  white  stone.  This  he  erected  near 
Panium,  a  beautiful  grotto,  where  flow  the  head  waters  of  the 
Jordan.  The  place  which  was  afterwards  to  be  made  cele¬ 
brated  by  this  beautiful  temple  was  of  note  even  before,  in 
consequence  of  this  rare  natural  curiosity. 

The  perpendicular  wall,  from  forty  to  fifty  feet  in  height, 
and  running  parallel  with  the  ancient  walls  of  the  place,  and 
standing  only  a  few  rods  from  it,  displays  not  far  from  its 
middle  part  a  high  irregularly-shaped  cavern,  which  at  the 
present  time,  moreover,  only  penetrates  the  mountain  a  few 
feet.  Th'*s  place,  according  to  Josephus,  was  the  source  of 
the  Jordan.  Professor  Han  el,2  who  visited  the  place  in  1847, 
reports  that  the  wall  has  been  very  much  shattered  by  an  earth¬ 
quake,  whose  results  are  to  be  seen  in  the  thickly  scattered 
fragments  strewn  around.  It  is  very  probable,  however,  that 
the  pieces  of  rock  so  abundant  there,  are  rather  to  be  ascribed 
to  the  ruins  of  the  demolished  temple  of  Herod,  of  which  there 
is  nothing  left  standing.  Other  architectural  objects  which 

1  Thomson,  l.c.  Bib.  Sacra ,  iii.  pp.  187-189  ;  Wilson,  Lands  of  the  Bible , 
ii.  p.  176. 

2  Dr  G.  Hand,  Reisetagebucli ,  in  Zeitsch.  d.  deutsch.  morgerdand  Gesell. 
vol.  ii.  p.  43. 



once  served  to  adorn  the  place,  appear  now  to  block  up  the 
entrance  to  the  cavern,  so  that  it  could  only  be  possible  to  dis¬ 
cover  the  true  spring  by  removing  the  great  mass  of  rubbish 
accumulated  there.  They  are  probably  now  sustained  by  an 
arch ;  for  Thomson  conjectured  that  so  many  pieces  of  rock 
could  only  have  been  borne  up  by  the  strong  support  of  a  vault. 
If  this  were  so,  we  should  be  able  to  understand  the  account 
which  Josephus  gives  of  the  place,  and  perhaps  to  recognise  its 
truth.  The  inscriptions  and  sculptured  volutes  found  above 
have  stood  the  weather  well,  and  display  traces  of  remark¬ 
able  skill.  Of  the  altar  which  Benjamin  of  Tudela1  (writing 
in  1165)  supposed  to  be  the  pediment  on  which  stood  Micali’s 
idol,  mentioned  in  Judg.  xviii.  17,  and  which  he  located  before 
the  Jordan  grotto  of  Banias,  there  is,  of  course,  not  a  trace  to 
be  found. 

Thomson  gives  a  more  explicit  account  of  the  situation  of 
the  city  than  his  predecessors.  Wilson 2  is  still  more  full. 
Banias  lies  in  the  midst  of  hills  and  mountains  ;  the  surface  of 
Bake  Huleh  cannot  be  seen  from  it,  it  being  shut  off  from 
sight  by  intervening  eminences.  On  these,  Wilson, 3  as  lie 
looked  southward,  saw  a  place  that  was  called  Mazarah  ;  the 
hills  themselves  he  found  to  bear  the  name  Jebel  Jura,  or 
Jeidur,  in  the  latter  one  of  which  he  thought  he  discovered 
traces  of  the  name  Ituraea,  which  was  given  in  ancient  times 
to  that  region.  Ain  Fit  lies  still  farther  south,  near  the  broad 
district  of  Gaalon,  Golan,  Gaulonitis,  or  Jolan,  which  em¬ 
braces  the  whole  country  south-east  of  Banias,  and  east  of 
Bake  Huleh.  Bike  Ituraea,  it  unquestionably  owes  its  local 
name  to  the  ancient  and  hitherto  undiscovered  city  of  Golan  in 
Bashan, — a  site  which,  with  three  others,  was  selected  by  Moses 
as  places  of  refuge  for  those  persons  of  the  tribe  of  Manasseh 
who  accidentally  committed  manslaughter.  Subsequently  the 
place  wras  given  to  the  children  of  Gershoin  (Deut.  iv.  43  ;  Josh, 
xx.  8,  xxi.  27 ;  1  Chron.  vi.  71).  The  little  plateau  on  which 
the  city  of  Banias  stands  is  a  hundred  feet  higher  than  the 
neighbouring  plain  of  the  same  name.  The  part  of  the  town 
which  lay  within  the  ancient  walls  lay  directly  south  of  the 

1  Benjamin  von  Tudela,  Itinerar.  ed.  Aslier,  1840,  i.  p.  82. 

2  Wilson,  Lands  of  the  Bible ,  ii.  pp.  175,  322. 

8  Ibid.  l.c.  pp.  173,  818. 

BAN  I  AS. 


great  spring,  whose  stream  forms  a  deep  bed  along  the  north¬ 
western  walls.  A  part  of  the  water  was  formerly  carried 
through  a  ditch  or  fosse,  which  protected  the  eastern  wall,  and 
which  ran  into  the  deep  cleft  formed  by  the  mountain  stream 
Wadi  el  Kid.  Along  the  bank  of  the  latter  the  southern  wall 
was  erected.  The  whole  place  was  therefore  surrounded  by 
water.  The  walls  were  very  strong,  and  protected,  as  the 
ruins  now  show,  by  eight  towers  :  certainly  a  very  formidable 
position  ;  an  irregular  triangle  or  trapezium,  broadest  at  the  east, 
— the  whole  so  small  as  to  be  walked  round  in  twenty  minutes, 
and  well  justifying  the  remark  of  Irby  and  Mangles,1  that 
Csesarea  Philippi  could  not  have  been  a  city  of  great  extent. 

It  is  only  in  the  north-eastern  portion  of  the  tract  once 
covered  by  the  ancient  city,  that  the  few  wretched  huts  stand 
which  form  the  present  town.  It  lies,  according  to  De  Bertou’s2 
measurements,  about  two  hundred  and  fifty-two  feet  higher 
than  the  Jordan  spring  at  Hasbeya.  The  western  part  of  the 
territory,  which  was  included  within  walls,  is  now  overgrown 
with  a  rank  profusion  of  bushes  and  weeds,  among  which  stand 
three  mills,  whose  wheels  are  moved  by  the  stream  from  the 
great  spring.  There  is  a  fourth  one  on  the  southern  stream, 
that  of  Wadi  el  Kid. 

The  suburbs  of  the  place,  as  they  may  be  called,  are  far 
more  extensive  than  the  town  itself ;  for  the  whole  plain  is 
thickly  scattered  with  the  fragments  of  pillars,  capitals,  and 
walls,  all  displaying  the  ancient  splendour  of  Cassarea  Philippi. 
Under  a  settled  government,  this  place,  now  so  pitiably  sunk, 
would  assume  new  importance,  for  its  natural  advantages  are 
remarkably  great.  The  soil  of  the  neighbourhood  is  of  extra¬ 
ordinary  fertility,  and  yields  a  more  ample  harvest  than  that  of 
any  other  part  of  Palestine.  There  is  a  noble  terebinth  tree 3 
growing  in  the  middle  of  the  village,  a  thick  carpet  of  grass 
covers  the  ground,  and  extensive  rice-fields  greet  the  eye  with 
their  fresh  green  colour  ;  the  neighbourhood  abounds  in  boars, 
gazelles,  and  other  varieties  of  game  ;  and  partridges,  ducks, 
and  snipes4  are  met  in  great  profusion. 

1  Irby  and  Mangles,  Trav.  p.  289. 

2  C.  de  Bertou,  Mem.  l.c.  Bullet,  xii.  Table  des  hauteurs. 

3  Burckhardt,  Gesenius’  ed.  i.  p.  91. 

4  Irby  and  Mangles,  Trav.  p.  289. 



Burckhardt  is  the  only  one  who  has  pushed1  out  from 
Banias  in  a  north-north-westerly  direction  for  any  distance. 
His  excursion  extended  about  five  miles,  and  on  the  way  he 
discovered  traces  of  an  ancient  paved  road.  He  discovered  the 
ruins  of  a  city,  to  which  he  gave  the  name  of  Bostra.  It  stood 
on  a  bold  height,  which  Seetzen  had  in  vain  attempted  to 
ascend.  The  stones  of  which  this  old  city  was  built  were  in 
many  cases  of  remarkable  size,  and  were  hewn.  There  were 
the  remains  of  some  fountains,  some  shattered  pillars,  but 
nothing  else  which  seemed  particularly  noteworthy.  Although 
Burckhardt  gave  the  name  Bostra  to  the  place,  yet  no  city  of 
this  name  seems  to  have  been  anciently  there  :  Gesenius  held 
it  to  be  Bathyra,  which  Herod  built  as  a  stronghold  against  the 
predatory  attacks  of  the  people  of  Trachonitis.  The  whole 
region  in  the  vicinity  of  this  collection  of  ruins  Burckhardt 
found  admirably  adapted  for  building  purposes.  Behind  this 
place  there  rises  an  eminence  of  some  pretensions,  called  the 
Jebel  Merura  Jubba.2 

Wilson,3  on  passing  from  Banias  to  Hasbeya,  discovered  a 
third  way  of  communication  between  the  two,  which  had  been 
taken  by  Burckhardt ;  one  of  special  interest,  in  consequence 
of  its  traversing  the  lowest  part  of  the  defile  through  which  the 
Hasbany  runs.  His  road  ran  north-westward  from  Banias  for 
about  five  miles,  along  the  southerly  base  of  Jebel  Sheikh,  then 
turned  northward,  and  five  miles  farther  on  crossed  the  stream 
Nahr  es  Seraiyib,  a  branch  of  the  Hasbany.  Hot  far  from 
that  point  is  the  narrow  ravine  through  which  the  Hasbany 
pours.  The  basalt  rocks  which  I  have  mentioned  as  found 
elsewhere  here  appear  again,  but  they  differ  from  those  found 
in  the  neighbourhood  of  Lake  Tiberias  in  the  large  proportion 
of  iron  which  they  contain.  Farther  up  in  the  valley  green 
sandstone  is  found,  and  the  whole  geological  structure  of  the 
soil  changes.  The  basaltic  pass  or  ravine  is  surrounded  by  a 
very  hilly  country  as  far  up  as  Hasbeya.  All  the  wadis  are 
full  of  olive  and  mulberry  plantations,  vineyards,  and  the  finest 
corn-fields.  In  fact,  the  whole  art  of  agriculture  has  here 
reached  a  stage  far  in  advance  of  that  found  in  every  other 
place  between  Beersheba  and  Dan. 

1  Burckhardt,  Gesenius’  ed.  i.  p.  92.  See  Thomson,  p.  196. 

2  See  Berghaus’  map.  3  Wilson,  Lands  of  the  Bible ,  ii.  pp.  180-182. 



The  restless  Burckhardt1  made  another  excursion  to  the  old 
Saracen  citadel  of  Banias,  which  no  European  had  visited 
before.  It  lies  directly  east  of  the  great  spring,  and  is  three 
miles  awav.  It  crowns  a  hill  fifteen  hundred  feet  above  the 


village  of  Banias,  and  affords  a  most  extensive  and  charming 
prospect,  extending  beyond  the  barren  Jebel  Heish,  Lake 
Iluleh,  and  Jebel  Safed.  This  castle,  whose  form  is  that  of 
an  irregular  quadrangle,  covers  the  whole  of  the  extensive  rocky 
and  completely  isolated  spur  of  Jebel  Sheikh,  on  which  it 
stands.  It  is  guarded  on  all  sides  by  inaccessible  gorges,  and 
only  on  the  north-east  does  a  single  narrow  crag  connect  the 
bill  with  the  main  body  of  the  range.  Even  here,  too,  there  is 
a  sudden  descent  of  from  two  hundred  to  three  hundred  feet 
from  the  rock-crowned  citadel  to  the  narrow  pass  just  alluded 
to.  This  north-eastern  side,  the  only  one  that  was  approachable, 
was  defended  by  walls,  round  towers,  and  bastions  of  extraor¬ 
dinary  strength.  The  south  side  of  the  citadel  is  guarded  by 
six  towers,  alternately  round  and  square,  through  only  one  of 
which  was  the  ascent  practicable  from  Wadi  el  Kid.  The 
walls  on  the  south-west,  west,  and  north-west,  lead  along  the 
brink  of  a  very  steep  precipice.  Within  the  citadel  the 
primitive  rock  has  been  left  standing  higher  than  even  the  walls 
themselves  ascend;  and  in  this  rock,  cisterns,  corn-chambers, 
storehouses,  and  arched  rooms  have  been  hewn.  At  the  west 
end  of  the  castle  there  is  a  staircase  cut  in  the  rock,  but  now 
so  broken  that  Thomson  was  unable  to  descend  to  ascertain  the 
truth  of  the  story  that  it  leads  to  a  subterranean  passage  con¬ 
necting  with  the  Banias  spring.  It  took  Burckhardt  twenty-five 
minutes  to  walk  round  this  citadel ;  Thomson  estimates  it  to 
be  about  an  English  mile  in  circuit.  He  was  astonished  at  the 
enormous  magnitude  of  the  fortress,  and  asserts  that  the  style  of 
the  architecture  was  in  many  places  exceedingly  fine.  A  round 
tower,  built  with  bevel  stones,  appeared  to  him  to  date  back  to  a 
period  long  antecedent  to  that  of  the  middle  ages, — a  supposition 
materially  strengthened  by  the  presence  of  many  Saracen  in¬ 
scriptions.  One  of  these,  bearing  the  date  of  the  latest  Crusades, 
indicates  only  tlia  repairs  which  have  been  effected.  This 
castle  of  Banias  has  been  called,  since  the  time  of  the  Crusades,2 

1  Burckhardt,  Trciv.  p.  37. 

2  Wilken,  Gesch.  d.  Kreutzziige ,  ii.  p.  5C9. 



Subeibeh, — a  name  which  can  hardly  be  traced  to  that  of  one 
of  the  Arab  tribes,  the  Snbeib,  which  live  gipsy-like  in  the 
neighbourhood.  These  are  only  recent  immigrants,  and  derive 
their  name  rather  from  the  citadel  than  the  reverse.  This 
desolate  old  castle,  whose  size,  strength,  and  position  must  have 
once  given  it  great  importance,  now  serves  only  the  fellah 
herdsmen  of  the  Jebel  Heish,  giving  them  a  place  of  refuge 
in  the  winter,  in  the  night-time,  and  in  severe  storms. 

Only  a  little  distance  from  this  castle  Thomson  learned  of 
the  existence  of  a  very  old  ruin,  called  Sheikh  Othman  el 
ITazur,1 — the  same  place  where  Burckhardt  passed  the  Ain 
el  Hazuri,2  and  heard  of  the  ruins  of  an  old  city  of  the  same 
name.  These  remain  as  yet  unvisited,  but  we  do  not  doubt 
that  they  would  prove  to  be  the  relics  of  the  ancient  capital  of 
Jabin  king  of  Hazor,  and  before  the  time  of  Joshua  the  chief 
city  of  the  whole  northern  basin  of  the  Jordan  (see  Josh.  xi. 
1-20).  Its  position  has  hitherto  been  completely  unknown, 
since  neither  Burckhardt  nor  Thomson  thought  of  looking  for 
Jabin’ s  capital  in  that  place.  The  hypothesis  was  formerly 
universal,  that  Hazor  was  on  the  west  side  of  Lake  Huleh. 

I  need  not  recapitulate  the  details  which  Bobinson3  has 
given  regarding  the  history  of  Banias,  its  receiving  the  name 
Neronias  in  honour  of  the  Emperor  Nero,  the  fearful  contest 
which  Vespasian  and  Titus  compelled  to  take  place  between 
Jews  and  wild  beasts  in  the  amphitheatre,  its  becoming  a 
bishopric  in  the  fourth  century,  its  later  fortunes  at  the  time  of 
the  Crusades,  and  its  entire  desertion  by  the  Christians  in  1253. 

6.  The  Jordan  Spring  of  Tell  el  Kadi ,  the  minor  Jordan  of 

Josephus  ;  the  situation  of  Dan  (Daphne),  and  of  Paneas. 

The  accounts  of  this  spring,  and  the  stream  which  flows 
from  it,  are  either  wrongly  given  in  the  accounts  of  the  early 
travellers  of  this  century,  or  are  so  incorrect  that  many  mis¬ 
apprehensions  have  been  raised  regarding  it;  and  these  have 
not  been  wholly  dispelled  till  the  publication  of  the  works  of 
Thomson  and  Wilson.  Seetzen  considered4  this  spring  as  of 

1  Thomson,  l.c.  p.  194. 

2  Burckhardt,  Trav.  p.  44. 

3  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  447  et  seq. 

4  Seetzen,  in  Mon.  Corresp.  xviii.  p.  344. 



no  importance;  and  Burckhardt’s1  visit  was  so  hasty,  or  his 
opportunities  of  seeing  it  made  so  unfavourable  by  reason  of 
the  rainy  weather  which  he  experienced,  that  his  account  is 
erroneous,  to  the  degree  of  putting  it  on  the  north-east  instead 
of  the  north-west  of  Banias.  This  mistake  naturally  misled 
Berghaus  in  his  map,  and  led  to  a  displacement  of  all  the 
localities  in  the  neighbourhood.  The  results  of  Robinson’s2 
investigations  permitted  Kiepert  to  rectify  this  error ;  but  De 
Bertou3  examined  the  whole  subject  with  great  care,  and 
ascertained  that  Tell  el  Kadi  is  due  west  from  Banias. 

To  Buckingham4  we  are  indebted  for  the  first  detailed 
description  of  this  important  spring.  Riding  west  from  Banias 
about  an  English  mile  (Thomson  found  it  to  be  three  miles), 
he  reached  a  slight  eminence,  similar  in  appearance  to  an 
artificial  mound.  Its  name  was  Tell  el  Kadi.  From  its  centre 
there  emerged  five  or  six  springs,  the  approach  to  which  was 
much  impeded  by  a  thicket  of  bushes.  The  water  from  these 
different  sources  he  found  to  flow  into  a  basin  a  hundred 
paces  in  diameter,  its  bottom  showing  that  new  springs  were 
feeding  it  from  below.  The  outlet  was  a  stream  which  runs 
southward,  passing  the  grave  of  a  certain  Sidi  Yuda  Ibu  Jakub, 
soon  uniting  with  the  Banias  stream,  and  after  running  from 
twelve  to  fifteen  miles,  entering  Lake  PXuleh.  Riding  for  an 
hour  westward  from  Tell  el  Kadi,  Buckingham  arrived  at  the 
Hasbany  bridge,  under  whose  three  arches  the  river  shot  with 
a  strong  and  rapid  current. 

Thomson  gives5  somewhat  more  full  details  regarding  this 
source  of  the  Jordan.  The  hill  or  mound  rises  forty  or  fifty 
feet  above  the  plain,  is  of  an  oval  shape,  and  is  wholly  covered 
with  oaks  and  other  kinds  of  trees.  It  is  evidently  the  result 
of  volcanic  action,  and  the  place  where  the  water  springs  up 
was  the  former  crater  of  the  extinct  volcano.  The  south-west 
side  of  this  crater  has  been  worn  away  by  the  power  of  the 

1  Burckhardt,  Trav.  p.  42. 

2  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  437. 

3  C.  de  Bertou,  Mem.  l.c.  Bullet.  T.  xii.  p.  142. 

4  Buckingham,  Trav.  p.  405.  See  also  Schubert,  Reise,  iii.  p.  115; 
Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  437  et  sq. ;  Berghaus,  Mem.  to  Map  of  Syria  ; 
and  Tristram’s  Land  of  Israel,  p.  580. 

5  Thomson,  Tell  el  Kadi ,  in  Bib.  Sacra ,  vol.  iii.  pp.  196-198.  See  also 
von  Schubert,  Reise ,  iii.  p.  120. 



water  issuing  from  tlie  springs, — a  clear,  crystal  stream  several 
times  as  broad  as  that  of  Banias  (according  to  Wilson,  ten 
paces  wide,  two  feet  deep,  and  with  an  uncommonly  strong 
current).  The  whole  body  of  water  does  not  run  through  this 
one  channel,  but  that  which  issues  from  the  highest  part  of  the 
former  crater  passes  down  the  south  side  of  the  hill,  giving 
motion  in  its  course  to  a  number  of  grist  mills,  which,  over¬ 
shadowed  as  they  are  by  noble  oaks,  seem  almost  buried  in 
the  rank  vegetation.  The  two  streams,  which  form  a  kind  of 
island,  unite  below  the  mills,  forming  a  little  river  of  from 
forty  to  fifty  feet  in  breadth,  which  even  in  September,  the 
driest  time  of  the  year,  rushes  vehemently  down  towards  Lake 

C.  de  Bertou,  who  confirms  this  account  in  all  essential 
particulars,  found  the  absolute  height  of  the  springs  to  be  three 
hundred  and  twenty-two  Paris  feet1  above  the  level  of  the  sea, 
therefore  two  hundred  and  thirty-four  feet  lower  than  the 
source  of  the  Hasbany,  and  four  hundred  and  fifty  feet  lower 
than  the  Banias  spring.  Yon  Wildenbruch’s2  measurements, 
however,  made  in  1845,  show  the  height  of  Tell  el  Kadi  above 
the  sea  to  be  considerably  greater. 

The  miller  of  the  place,  whom  Thomson  knew,  pointed  out 
in  a  south-westerly  direction,  and  at  a  distance  of  three  miles, 
a  clump  of  trees,  where,  he  asserted,  the  Tell  el  Kadi  stream 
joins  that  from  Banias.  The  place  lies  in  the  marsh  land,  a 
little  distance  north  of  a  huge  mound,  whose  appearance  was 
similar  to  that  of  Tell  el  Kadi,  and  which  Thomson  supposed 
to  be  the  remains  of  a  second  extinct  volcano.  The  miller 
had  often  been  there ;  and  according  to  his  account,  the  united 
stream  flows  for  some  distance  through  the  marsh  land,  and 
then  enters  the  Ilasbany. 

South-west  of  the  Tell  el  Kadi  are  to  be  seen  several 
deserted  Arab  huts  of  recent  construction ;  and  the  locality 
seems  to  be  so  peculiarly  exposed  to  miasmatic  vapours  from 
the  marshes,  that  many  have  deemed  it  impossible  for  permanent 
settlements  to  be  made  there ;  and  Thomson  was  of  the  opinion 
that  this  was  a  conclusive  reason  that  the  celebrated  city  of 

1  C.  de  Bertou,  l.c.  Bull.  xii.  p.  143. 

2  Von  Wildenbruch,  in  Berlin  Moncitsber.  tier  geograph.  Gesell. ,  new 
series,  vol.  iii.  plate  iii.  p.  251. 



Laish,  which  the  Danites  once  captured,  could  not  have  been 
in  that  region,  as  many  have  supposed. 

A  few  minutes’  walk  west  of  the  Tell  el  Ivadi  the  marsh 
land  begins.  It  is  intersected  by  a  number  of  rills,  which 
would,  if  united,  form  a  stream  of  considerable  size,  but  which, 
separated  as  they  are  from  each  other,  flow  in  tortuous  channels 
till  they  reach  the  lower  marsh  land,  on  whose  borders  are 
to  be  seen  scattered  rice-fields  of  great  luxuriance.  Not  far 
westward  Thomson  arrived  at  the  swollen  Hasbany,  whose 
channel  here  intersects  the  volcanic  tufa  of  the  plain,  and  forms 
a  kind  of  ravine  or  gorge.  De  Bertou1  ascertained  the  width 
of  the  stream  to  be  thirty  feet  in  this  place,  and  the  height  of 
the  steep  rocky  banks  to  be  sixty  feet.  After  leaving  this 
defile,  which  is  not  of  long  extent,  the  river  divides  into  two 
arms,  the  narrower  one  of  which  was  originally  an  artificial 
canal,  probably  constructed  in  ancient  times  for  the  irrigation 
of  the  otherwise  unprofitable,  but  in  reality  thoroughly  pro¬ 
ductive  soil.2  This  canal  or  western  arm  forms  with  the 
eastern  one  a  kind  of  delta,  at  whose  northern  angle  lies  the 
pitiful  village  of  el-Zuk.  No  one  has  traced  the  Hasbany 
proper  below  this  point ;  but  Thomson  followed  the  windings 
of  the  canal  several  miles  westward,  until  it  entered  another 
stream  flowing  from  the  Merj  Ayun,  whose  waters  flow  into 
Lake  Huleh. 

We  have  now  indicated  the  geographical  peculiarities  of  the 
sources  of  the  Jordan  east  of  the  river  Hasbany,  so  far  as 
modern  discovery  throws  light  upon  them.  We  can  therefore 
pass  lightly  over  the  hypotheses  and  vague  conjectures  concern¬ 
ing  them,  so  freely  indulged  in  by  many  who  venture  to  critk 
else  the  descriptions  of  Josephus  and  other  early  writers.  As 
instances  of  what  I  mean,  I  may  refer  to  Leake’s,  and  even 
Thomson’s,  decided  opinion,  that  Banias  stands  on  the  site  of 
the  ancient  Dan ;  or,  to  take  another  instance,  that  the  minor 
Jordan  spoken  of  by  Josephus  was  the  Hasbany,  a  much 
larger  stream  than  that  of  Banias. 

The  true  state3  of  the  case  with  regard  to  Josephus’  position 
is  this.  He  held  the  Banias  stream  to  be  the  chief  source  of 

1  De  Bertou,  l.c.  xii.  p.  143. 

2  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  434  et  sq. 

3  Robinson,  Notes  to  Thomson  in  Bib.  Sacra ,  vol.  iii.  pp.  207-214. 



the  Jordan,  and  accepted  the  current  hypothesis  of  his  day, 
that  Lake  Phiala  was  connected  with  this  source  by  a  subter¬ 
ranean  passage, — a  position  which  modern  observers  have  shown 
to  be  physically  impossible.  He  spoke,  indeed,  of  a  stream 
which  he  called  the  minor  Jordan;  but  by  this  term  he  certainly 
did  not  refer  to  the  Hasbany,  but  completely  ignored  it.  The 
reason  for  this  was,  that  in  the  popular  opinion  of  the  Hebrews, 
only  those  springs  which  are  found  within  the  Promised  Land, 
at  any  rate  within  the  actual  territory  of  Israel,  could  be 
reckoned  as  strictly  belonging  to  the  holy  river.  This  could 
only  be  the  Banias  spring,  and  those  in  its  immediate  neigh¬ 
bourhood  ;  that  of  the  Hasbany,  lying  among  the  high  Anti- 
Lebanon  range,  was  altogether  outside  of  the  Hebrew  territory. 
It  may  be  conjectured,  without  any  straining  of  probabilities, 
that  at  an  early  period  there  was  no  connection,  as  at  present, 
between  the  Hasbany  and  the  stream  formed  by  the  union  of 
the  Tell  el  Kadi  springs  and  that  of  Banias.  Ilydrographically 
speaking,  the  Hasbany  is  to  be  considered  the  true  head  waters 
of  the  Jordan,  and  its  course  would  seem  to  have  been  a  direct 
one  to  Lake  Huleh,  receiving  no  tributaries ;  while,  on  the 
other  hand,  the  Banias  and  Tell  el  Kadi  streams  appear  to  have 
united  and  sent  their  independent  contribution  to  the  lake.  If 
this  is  the  case,1  Josephus  was  justified  in  passing  entirely  by 
the  Hasbany,  and  in  regarding  it  as  merely  a  tributary  of  the 
Samachonites  Lacus,  but  as  having  no  connection  with  the 
sacred  Jordan. 

Josephus  speaks  of  the  minor  or  smaller  Jordan  in  four 
different  places.  One  is  where  he  alludes  to  Abraham’s  attack 
upon  the  Assyrians  who  had  carried  Lot  captive.  His  words 
are  :  u  to  Dan,  for  thus  is  the  other  source  of  the  Jordan  called” 
(see  Gen.  xiv.  14,  15).  In  the  second  passage  Josephus  asserts 
that  u  the  spies  of  the  Danites  made  a  day’s  journey  farther 
into  the  great  plain,  which  belonged  to  the  city  of  Sidon,  and 
which  is  not  far  from  the  mountains  of  Lebanon  and  the 
sources  of  the  smaller  Jordan :  thither  went  the  Danites,  and 
built  the  city  of  Dan  on  the  site  of  Laish  or  Leshem.”  The 
account,  as  it  is  given  circumstantially  in  Judg.  xviii.  7,  28,  is 
as  follows :  u  Then  the  five  men  departed  and  came  to  Laish, 
and  saw  the  people  that  were  therein,  how  they  dwelt  careless 
Country  of  the  Sources  of  the  Jordan ,  in  Bib.  Sacra  for  1843,  p.  12. 



after  tlie  manner  of  the  Zidonians  [Sidonians],  quiet  and  secure; 
and  there  was  no  magistrate  in  the  land  that  might  put  them 
to  shame  in  anything,  and  they  were  far  from  the  Zidonians, 
and  had  no  business  with  any  man ;  .  .  .  and  there  was  no  de¬ 
liverer,  because  it  was  far  from  Zidon,  and  it  [Laish  or  Leshem] 
had  no  business  with  any  man ;  and  it  was  in  the  valley 
that  lieth  by  Belh-rehob.  And  they  built  a  city,  and  dwelt 

The  third  passage  in  Josephus  speaks  of  the  setting  up  of 
the  golden  calves  by  Jeroboam  the  first  king  of  Israel,  who 
introduced  this  mode  of  worship  from  Egypt.  One  of  these 
he  set  up  at  Bethel,  the  other  u  at  Dan,  which  lies  near  the 
source  of  the  minor  Jordan”  (1  Kings  xii.  29). 

The  fourth  passage  describes  Seleucia,  which  lay  upon  the 
Samachonites,  a  lake  thirty  stadia  broad  and  sixty  long,  whose 
marshes  extend  u  /le^pi  Adepvrjs  yoopiov,  7rr]yds  eyovros,  at  rpe- 
(J}OV(Tl  70V  pu/cpbv  KdXob'pieVOV  ’lopSaVTJV  VI TO  70V  71]S  ypVGl]S 

/3oos  vecov,  TrpOGTrepLTTovacu  tw  pLeyaXa)  ”  ( cle  Bell.  Jud.  iv.  11). 
From  this  passage  it  is  plain  that  the  Daphne  mentioned  in  it 
must  be  identical  with  or  near  to  the  place  spoken  of  elsewhere 
as  Aavov,  Adva,  and  A  dvr],  whose  location  is  exactly  that  spoken 
of  in  connection  with  the  minor  Jordan,  and  as  that  where  the 
golden  calf  was  set  up.  Reland  and  Havercamp  did  not  con¬ 
sider  Adcj)V7)  and  A  dvr]  as  two  different  places,  but  held  the 
name  Daphne,  occurring  only  once  as  it  does,  erroneously  given 
in  place  of  Dan,  since  there  is  no  proof  that  the  name  Dan  was 
subsequently  changed  to  Daphne.  De  Bertou’s  and  Dr  Barth’s2 
hypothesis,  that  the  name  is  derived  from  that  of  the  oleander, 
which  is  so  prevalent  there,  is  not  to  be  condemned  as  hasty  or 
superficial ;  nor  is  Thomson’s  opinion  to  be  rashly  cast  aside,  that 
Daphne  and  Dan  indicate  two  different  places,  which  lay  so  near 
together  as  to  be  confounded  together  in  popular  speech.  Dan 
he  concluded  to  be  Banias,  and  Daphne  a  place  in  the  suburbs, 
coincident  with  the  Tell  el  Kadi. 

Wilson’s  accidental  discovery3  solved  all  the  difficulties;  for 
the  miller  spoken  of  above  gave  the  name  Shedshar  ed  Difnah 
to  a  small  clump  of  trees  two  miles  south  of  the  Tell  el  Kadi. 

1  Yon  Raumer,  Palastina ,  p.  126,  note  29,  b. 

2  Dr  H.  Barth,  Tagebuch,  MS. 

3  Wilson,  Lands  of  the  Bible ,  ii.  p.  173. 



This  is  the  Adcpvrj  of  our  clay,  the  Difnah  or  Oleander  Grove 
of  our  day,  and  manifestly  the  little  grove  spoken  of  by  Thom¬ 
son.1  The  passage  in  Josephus  is  therefore  to  be  taken  literally, 
where  he  says  that  u  the  Samachonites  extends  to  Daphne,  but 
not  to  Dan,” — a  new  proof  how  important  the  closest  local  sur¬ 
veys  of  the  geography  of  Palestine  as  it  now  is,  is  for  the  ascer¬ 
taining  its  geography  in  historical  epochs,  in  order  not  to  follow 
groundless  hypotheses,  and  thereby  to  introduce  all  sorts  of 
confusion  into  the  understanding  of  ancient  authors,  of  which 
we  have  countless  examples.2 

All  these  passages  in  Josephus,  remarks  Robinson,  mani¬ 
festly  discriminate  between  the  smaller  Jordan  and  that  of 
Banias,  of  which,  in  the  fourth  one,  Josephus  speaks  as  the 
greater  Jordan.  Thomson  remarks,  however,  that  there  does 
not  seem  at  the  present  day  to  be  any  natural  reason  for  this 
distinction.  The  a  smaller  Jordan”  of  the  Jewish  historian 
is  evidently  the  stream  flowing  from  Tell  el  Kadi,  and  the 
title  of  pre-eminence  was  given  to  the  stream  on  whose  banks 
stood  the  beautiful  temple  of  Paneas,  and  whose  waters  issue 
from  the  great  grotto  of  Panium. 

That  the  Paneas  of  Josephus  is  not  identical  with  Dan,  is 
seen  very  clearly  in  the  passages  already  cited  from  him,  and 
in  others  which  occur  in  his  writings.  Eusebius,  too,  visited 
Paneas,  and  discriminated  between  it  and  Dan.  Jerome,  too, 
makes  distinct  allusion  to  it  in  these  words:  “  Dan  viculus  est 
quarto  a  Paneade  mileario  euntibus  Tyrum,  qui  usque  hodie  sic 
vocatur.  De  quo  et  Jordanius  flumen  erumpens  a  loco  sortitus 
est  nomen.”  Dan  seems,  therefore,  to  have  been  a  settlement 
at  the  Tell  el  Kadi.  It  is  no  sufficient  proof  to  the  contrary 
that  there  are  now  to  be  seen  no  remains  of  a  temple  dating 
back  to  the  time  of  J eroboam,3  nor  that  the  region  is  supposed 
to  be  inimical  to  health,  in  consequence  of  exhalations  from  the 
marshes.  There  are  traces  of  former  cultivation  there,  and 
north  of  the  fountain  there  are  traces  of  houses  once  standing 
there :  a  proof,  at  least,  that  the  place  was  once  regarded  as 

1  Thomson,  l.c.  iii.  p.  197. 

2  See  Onomcisticon  Hieron.  s.v.  Dan ,  confirmed  by  Gesenius  ;  also  Wilson, 
Lands  of  the  Bible,  ii.  pp.  171,  173. 

3  Burclthardt,  Gesenius’  ed,  i.  p.  95.  See  also  Wilson,  Lands  of  the  Bible , 
ii.  p.  172. 



habitable.  The  Arabs  do  not  regard  these  exhalations  insalu¬ 
brious  ;  and  besides,  the  question  may  be  permitted,  whether  at 
the  time  of  a  much  denser  population  of  the  whole  country  than 
now  exists,  there  was  not  a  better  drainage  than  at  present,  which 
prevented  the  existence  of  miasma. 

Still  another  argument  for  the  situation  of  Dan  at  the  Tell 
el  Kadi.1  In  Judg.  xviii.  28,  the  Laish  or  Dan  is  said  to  have 
been  u  in  the  valley  that  lieth  by  Beth-rehob.”  Compare  this 
with  Num.  xiii.  21,  where,  in  the  account  of  the  sending  of  the 
spies  to  examine  the  country,  we  are  told  that  “  they  searched 
the  land  from  the  wilderness  of  Zin  unto  Behob,  as  men  come 
to  Hamath,” — an  expression  equivalent  to  the  later  one,  u  from 
Dan  to  Beersheba.”  Here,  therefore,  there  is  an  allusion  to  a 
place  situated  just  at  the  entrance  of  the  mountain-road  leading 
to  Hamath.  This  corresponds  exactly  to  the  position  of  Dan  in 
Aram-beth-Rehob,  the  territory  alluded  to  in  2  Sam.  x.  6,  and 
spoken  of  in  Judg.  i.  31  as  unconquerable  by  the  tribe  of  Asher, 
only  gained  by  the  Danites  by  the  help  of  treachery. 

7.  The  west  side  of  the  Hashany ;  the  Merj  Ayun ;  the  springs 
and,  brooks  of  Jebel  Safed;  Lake  el  Huleh  the  Lacus 
Samachonites  and  the  Waters  of  Merom  of  the  ancients . 

From  the  bridge  over  the  Hasbany  at  el-Ghujar,  Bucking¬ 
ham  gradually  ascended  the  hills  lying  at  the  north-north-west, 
and  after  half  an  hour  arrived  at  the  Merj  Ayun,  a  place 
lying  on  his  right  hand,  and  at  a  considerable  elevation.  He 
afterwards  passed  a  number  of  villages  which  Berghaus  has 
set  down  conjecturally  upon  his  map,  but  of  whose  position 
enough  is  known  with  certainty  to  enable  us  to  say  that  they 
form  the  line  of  watershed  between  the  upper  Jordan  and  the 
Litany.  Buckingham’s  sickness  prevented2  his  making  any 
observations  of  importance, — a  fact  to  be  regretted  all  the  more, 
since  very  few  have  followed  him  over  the  same  route :  even 
Seetzen  and  Burckhardt  never  explored  the  country  lying  on 
the  west  side  of  the  Hasbany.  Irby  and  Mangles,  however, 
succeeded,  in  February  1818,  in  reaching  the  western  bank  of 
this  river;  but  they  found  the  marshes  so  dangerous,  that  their 
horses  nearly  perished  in  the  mud.  This  season,  it  will  be 

1  Rosenmiiller,  Bib.  Alterth.  i.  p.  252. 

2  Buckingham,  Trav.  p.  407. 



remembered,,  is  the  wettest  of  the  whole  year.  Their  peril  was 
of  course  such  as  to  prevent  their  making  any  observations,  till 
they  succeeded  at  last  in  reaching  the  extreme  western  side  of 
the  plain,  the  somewhat  drier  and  higher  road  leading  to  Safed. 
The  whole  plain,  according  to  Irby  and  Mangles,  was  literally 
covered  with  flocks  of  wild  geese,  ducks,  snipes,  and  all  sorts 
of  wild-fowl.  At  the  foot  of  the  mountain  range  thev  saw  a 
village  in  which  stood  some  Roman  ruins,  and  higher  un  there 
opened  before  them  a  broad  panorama  which  embraced  at  once 
Lake  Huleh  and  the  Sea  of  Tiberias.1 

Neither  von  Schubert,  Russegger,  Robinson,  Robe,  nor 
Wolcott  succeeded,2  in  consequence  of  the  incessant  anarchy 
and  hostility  of  the  Druses,  in  exploring  the  western  portion 
of  the  Hasbany  valley.  We  are  therefore  the  more  thankful 
for  the  use  of  the  diaries  of  Eli  Smith  and  Thomson,  the 
account  of  Major  Robe,  and  that  of  my  young  friend  Dr 

A  short  distance  from  the  bridge  over  the  Hasbany,  and 
close  by  the  border  of  the  marshes,  the  traveller  meets  an 
extensive  basaltic  dyke  about  two  hundred  feet  in  thickness 
and  three  hundred  paces  in  width.3  Its  course  is  directly  from 
north  to  south,  directly  parallel  with  the  western  mountain 
ridge,  and  several  miles  in  extent.  It  forms  the  eastern  wall, 
so  to  speak,  of  the  Merj  Ayun.4  It  is  traversed  by  the  moun¬ 
tain  stream,  of  which  mention  has  already  been  made,  in  connec¬ 
tion  with  a  canal  leading  westward  from  the  Hasbany.  From 
the  bridge  over  this  river,  to  the  western  range  of  mountains, 
Thomson  estimated  to  be  about  twelve  miles,  and  the  extent 
of  the  plain  north  of  the  marshes  about  ten. 

Merj  Ayun  forms5  a  district  under  the  Druse  government 
of  the  Lebanon.  It  is  a  fine  tract  of  land ;  it  lies  west  of  the 
Wadi  et  Teim,  and  is  bounded  on  the  west  by  the  wild  valley 

1  See  also  Burckhardt,  Trav.  p.  42  ;  Wilson,  Lands  of  the  Bible ,  ii.  p. 
168  ;  Irby  and  Mangles,  Trav.  p.  290  ;  Dr  H.  Barth,  Tagebuch ,  ms.  1847. 

2  Major  Robe,  in  Bib.  Sacra ,  pp.  9-14 ;  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii. 
434,  439. 

3  Wilson,  Lands  of  the  Bible,  vol.  ii.  p.  165. 

4  Will.  Tyriens.  Histor.  xxi.  28,  p.  1014.  See  also  Dr  Barth,  Tagebuch , 
1847,  and  Bib.  Sacra  1843,  p.  13. 

5  Wilson,  Lands  of  the  Bible,  ii.  p.  166 ;  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii. 
442 ;  Thomson,  l.c.  iii.  p.  206. 



of  the  Litany,  and  on  the  south-east  by  the  great  basaltic  dyke 
already  referred  to.  It  forms  an  almost  round  basin,  is  nearly 
level,  is  arable,  and  well  watered.  Whether  Ayun  has  any 
connection  with  the  Hebrew  Ijon,  in  the  neighbourhood  of 
Dan  and  Naphtali  (1  Kings  xv.  20  ;  2  Chron.  xvi.  4),  is  uncer¬ 
tain.  Thomson  holds  it  to  be  the  same,  and  speaks  strongly 
of  its  uncommon  beauty  and  its  ample  supplies  of  water. 

Thomson,1  on  leaving  the  union  of  the  canal  with  the 
Ayun  stream,  and  on  ascending  the  rough  road  leading  to  the 
Castle  Hunin,  was  surprised  to  see  the  resemblance  in  point  of 
extent  between  Lake  Tiberias  and  Lake  Huleh,  including  its 
marsh  land.  To  him  the  evidence  was  conclusive,  that  the 
latter  lake  once  covered  with  its  waters  a  large  portion  of  the 
swamps  which  now  fringe  it.  Indeed,  it  often  happens  that 
in  the  winter  time,  after  heavy  rains,  the  marshes  seem  to  be 
transformed  into  a  series  of  connected  pools.  How  easily  the 
hydrographical  character  of  a  lake  like  this  may  be  affected, 
is  shown  by  the  circumstance  that,  at  the  instigation  of  a 
number  of  agriculturists,  Ibrahim  Pasha  was  persuaded  to 
allow  some  rocks  to  be  blasted  which  stood  at  the  outlet.  The 
result  was  an  immediate  fall  in  the  waters  of  the  lake.  The 
soil  thus  reclaimed  yielded  for  several  years  a  most  abundant 
harvest,  but  at  length  the  soil  deposited  at  the  outlet  raised 
the  waters  to  their  former  elevation.  Thomson  was  assured 
that  the  whole  lake  could  be  drained  at  little  expense. 

Major  Kobe’s  map  exhibits  four  little  streams  flowing  from 
the  mountain  ridge  west  of  the  lake  south-easterly  till  they 
enter  its  waters.  Their  names  are  Ain  es  Serab,  et-Thahab, 
el-Masiah,  and  el-Barbiereh.  Wilson  gives'2  these  names  with 
comparatively  little  difference  in  their  forms.  South  of  these 
streams  is  the  larger  one  of  Ain  Belat,  whose  source  is  a 
hundred  and  ten  Paris  feet  above  the  level  of  the  sea.  Still 
farther  south,  and  only  a  quarter  of  an  hour’s  walk  from  the 
north-western  corner  of  Lake  Huleh,  is  the  uncommonly 
copious  spring  of  el-Mellahah.  This  Thomson  ascertained  to 
be  twenty  rods  in  circumference  and  two  feet  in  depth.  The 
water  was  lukewarm,  and  unpleasant  to  the  taste  :  the  stream 

1  Thomson,  l.c.  iii.  p.  201.  See  also  C.  de  Bertou,  Mem.  xii.  p.  144  ; 
and  Wilson,  Lands  of  the  Bible ,  ii.  p.  166. 

2  Wilson,  l.c.  ii.  p.  166. 

VOL.  II. 




that  conveyed  it  to  the  lake  was  forty  to  fifty  feet  wide. 
Wilson  says  it  may  be  ranked  among  the  more  prominent  head 
waters  which  feed  the  Jordan. 

The  district  in  the  immediate  neighbourhood  of  this  spring, 
Thomson  says,  formed  the  largest  continuous  extent1  of  grazing 
land  that  he  had  ever  seen.  It  is  completely  level,  and  covered 
with  rushes  and  grass.  Countless  flocks  of  white  sheep  and 
black  goats,  every  one  with  its  shepherd  before  and  the  dogs . 
behind,  traverse  it  in  all  directions  from  sunrise  to  sunset : 
herds  of  camels  and  cattle  animate  every  part  of  the  plain. 
Buffaloes  are  seen  wading  in  the  mud,  wild,  destitute  of  hair, 
thin  in  their  build,  with  flapping  ears,  staring  eyes,  and  power¬ 
ful  tusks.  There  is  nothing  poetical  in  the  appearance  of 
these  creatures,  as  in  the  reem2  praised  by  Job,  David,  and 
Isaiah,  and  which,  though  called  the  unicorn,  seems  to  be  the 
wild  buffalo,  still  the  same  untameable  creature  as  when  de¬ 
scribed3  in  Job  xxxix.  9-12. 

South-west  of  the  el-Mellahah  spring,  and  only  half  a  mile 
from  it,  is  the  north-western  corner  of  the  lake.  The  north 
portion  of  el-Huleh  is  subject  to  the  control  of  Hasbeya. 
Strictly  speaking,  the  name  is  only  applicable  to  the  northern 
half,  but  its  application  to  the  southern  has  become  universal. 
The  northern  shore  is  muddy,  but  the  southern  is  steep  and 
stony.  The  breadth  Thomson  estimated  to  be  about  seven 
miles,  but  towards  the  outlet  it  is  much  narrower.  All  its 
sides,  excepting  the  northern,  are  sharply  defined,  and  arable 
land  comes  down  even  to  the  water’s  side. 

De  Bertou  gives4  the  depression  of  the  surface  of  Lake 
Huleh  as  eighteen  and  a  half  feet  below  the  level  of  the 
Mediterranean.  Here  he  thinks  the  true  Ghor  begins. 

The  name  el-Huleh  has  been  universally  applied5  to  this 
lake  since  the  time  of  the  Crusades ;  yet  its  original  application 
seems  to  have  been  at  a  much  earlier  date.  It  has  been  con- 

1  Thomson,  l.c.  p.  200.  See  also  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  p.  437. 

2  Rosenmiiller,  Bib.  Alterthk.  iv.  pp.  199-204. 

3  Von  Schubert,  Reise ,  iii.  p.  117.  See  also  Wilson,  Lands ,  etc.  ii.  p. 
167  ;  Dr  Roth,  Zoology,  in  Harris,  The  Highlands  of  Ethiopia ,  vol.  ii. 
Append,  p.  425. 

4  C.  de  Bertou,  lx.  xii.  p.  145. 

5  Rosenmiiller,  Bib.  Alterthk.  i.  p.  253,  Note  70,  p.  309,  and  ii.  pp.  175, 



jectured1  that  the  name  of  Hul,  a  son  of  Aram  (Gen.  x.  23), 
has  some  connection  with  the  word  Huleh,  the  more  as  Aram’s 
possessions  comprised  the  northern  part  of  Syria,  the  country 
immediately  contiguous.  There  is  the  more  probability  in  this, 
that  the  word  Hul  signifies  just  such  a  depressed  valley  as  that 
in  which  Lake  Huleh  lies.  Josephus  calls  it  by  a  term  whose 
etymology  is  unknown,  Lake  Samochonites ;  in  the  Old  Testa¬ 
ment  it  is  designated  as  the  waters  of  Merorn,  i.e.  waters  of 
the  highlands ;  and  in  the  adjacent  plains  Joshua  gained  his 
memorable  conquest  over  Jabin  king  of  Hazor,  and  the  princes 
who  were  allied  with  him,  and  brought  the  northern  part  of 
Palestine  under  the  dominion  of  Israel.  Strabo  and  Pliny 
allude  to  this  lake  under  various  designations.  The  former 
speaks  of  the  marshes  north  of  Lake  Gennesareth,  in  which 
grow  aromatic  rushes  and  the  calamus.  Pliny,  too,  speaks  of 
these  as  the  natural  productions  of  the  place ;  and  Schubert’s 
discoveries  showed  that  they  were  perfectly  truthful  in  their 

From  the  narratives  of  some  travellers  who  visited  Lake 
Huleh  during  the  middle  ages,  as  well  as  in  the  writings  of 
Cotovicus  (1599)  and  Quaresmius  (1622),  we  learn2  that  in  dry 
summers  the  whole  bed  was  dry,  nothing  remaining  but  an 
extensive  swamp.  Cotovicus  asserts  that  he  has  seen  it  when 
it  was  shrunk  into  a  little  pond  of  not  more  than  five  hundred 
paces  in  circumference. 

8.  The  Mountain  Cities  on  the  Western  Range ,  or  Jehel  Safed , 
lhl  or  Hihl  ( Abel ,  Ahil),  in  the  Merj  Ayun  ( Ijon ),  Ilunin , 
ILedesh ,  and  Safed . 

The  western  continuation  of  the  Lebanon,  Anti-Lebanon,  as 
well  as  the  small  neighbouring  ridge  of  Arbel,  and  which  now 
bears  the  general  name  of  Jebel  Safed,  is  interesting  to  us  as  the 
location  of  several  localities  of  historical  importance,  and  which 
have  been  made  the  object  of  recent  careful  inquiry.  Among 
the  names  which  are  connected  with  this  range,  are  those  of  the 
biblical  Ijon,  of  Ibl  (Abel),  Hunin,  Kedesli,  Benit,  and  Safed. 
Of  these  the  Hunin  and  Ivedesh  are  the  most  interesting,  as 
probably  affording  the  best  clue  to  the  situation  of  the  extremely 

1  Rosenmuller,  Bib .  Altertlik.  i.  p.  253. 

2  Quaresmius,  Elucid.  Terr.  Set.  ii.  vii.  c.  12,  fol.  872. 



ancient  city  of  Hazor,  the  most  powerful  place  in  the  northern 
portion  of  Canaan,  and  the  residence  of  Jabin,  the  mightiest  of 
the  Canaanite  kings. 

All  of  these  places  lie  in  the  least  known  portion  of  Galilee, 
the  northern  part,  on  the  eastern  confines  of  the  Phoenician 
territory  :  they  offer,  therefore,  only  probability  instead  of  cer¬ 
tainty,  in  a  comparison  of  the  past  with  the  present  :  still, 
meagre  as  are  the  sources  of  our  knowledge  regarding  them, 
they  are  not  unworthy  of  our  investigation. 

(1.)  The  Hibl  of  Buckingham  ;  III  of  Eli  Smith  ;  Ihl  or  Abil 
el  ITawa  of  Thomson ;  ancl  the  Abil  el  Kamh  of  Thomson. 
The  various  places  bearing  the  name  of  Abil.  The  Abel- 
betli-maachah  and  the  Ijon  of  Scripture. 

Buckingham’s  diary  seems  to  give  the  situation  of  the  place 
Plibl  with  accuracy,  as  lying  on  a  cone-shaped  mountain,  which 
rises  over  against  the  southern  contraction  of  the  Hasbeya 
river.  Eli  Smith,  in  passing  from  Ain  el  Mellahah  past  Ain 
Belat,  passed  through  a  place  called  Ibil  or  Abil,1  and  thence 
passed  on  towards  the  Litany  bridge.  When  Thomson  passed 
from  the  lower  Hasbany  Valley,  in  the  volcanic  plain  lying  on 
his  way  to  Banias,  he  was  told  that  on  the  mountains  at  his  left 
there  were  the  three  places,  Ibel  or  Abil  el  Hawa,  el-Khiyam, 
and  el-Ghujar.  Of  these,  the  first-named  was  said  to  be  the 
one  farthest  to  the  south-east,  and  eastward  of  Merj  Ayun. 
On  Kiepert’s  map  there  is  also  entered  another  Abil,  to  which 
the  affix  el-Kama  is  made :  it  lies  farther  south-west,  and  near 
the  southern  extremity  of  the  Merj  Ayun,  and  south  of  the 
Druse  village  of  Metullah.  On  Kobe’s  map,  however,  this 
name  is  placed  farther  to  the  south-west,  on  the  road  past  Wadi 
Diflah  ;  while  at  the  locality  south-west  of  the  Merj  Ayun 
there  is  the  simple  name  Abil,  and  the  more  easterly  one  on  the 
Hasbeya  is  entirely  wanting.  From  this  it  is  impossible  to  tell 
whether  there  are  two  or  three  places  of  the  same  name  in  that 
vicinity,  and  which  of  them  is  the  Abel  of  the  Old  Testament.2 

From  Hunin  to  that  western  Ibl  or  Abil  el  Kamh, 
Thomson  rode  directly  north,  his  course  for  the  first  half-hour 

1  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  pp.  454,  459. 

2  See  also  Wilson,  Lands  of  the  Bible ,  ii.  p.  166  ;  Thomson,  iii.  pp.  187, 
204,  206. 



taking  him  over  the  ridge  of  the  high  plateau,  and  through  a 
thick  growth  of  oaks  and  other  trees.  On  one  of  the  adjacent 
hills  a  company  of  female  camels  was  pasturing  with  their 
young, — a  sight  altogether  new  to  him.  The  herd  was  the  pro¬ 
perty  of  an  Arab  tribe  which  had  encamped  north  of  Hunin. 
Descending  with  considerable  abruptness  for  some  minutes,  he 
crossed,  the  barrier  line  between  Belad  Besharah  and  Merj 
Ayun,  and  left  Abil  on  the  east,  lying  several  hundred  feet  lower 
down.  This  Abil,  a  large  Christian  village,  is  so  celebrated  for 
its  excellent  wheat,  i.e.  Kamli,1  that  it  is  generally  known  as  Abil 
el  Kameh. 

Robinson  thought  it  quite  probable2  that  the  Merj  Ayun 
is  the  Ijon  of  the  Old  Testament,  but  was  unable  to  come  to 
a  decision  whether  this  Abil,  or  some  other,  was  the  Abel  or 
Abel-beth-maachah  of  Holy  Writ.  Thomson,  however,  was 
decidedly  of  the  conviction,3  that  the  Abel  el  Kamh  which  he 
passed  through  was  the  biblical  Abel,  because  in  the  Scriptures 
it  was  very  often  coupled  with  Ijon,  while  the  latter,  judging  by 
the  pronunciation,  is  identical  with  Ayun.  This  view  Robinson 
in  subsequent  years  has  assented  to.  It  only  remains  to  say, 
that  Buckingham  alone  has  mentioned  a  place  as  Merj  Ayun, 
which  was  elevated  above  the  road  which  he  took,  and  was  on 
his  right :  perhaps  the  ancient  Ijon,  which  would  then  command 
the  valley  on  the  east  as  Abil  would  do  the  west. 

Abel  is  discriminated  from  Beth-maachah  in  the  passage 
where  we  are  told  of  Joab  (2  Sam.  xx.  14,  15),  that  he  “  went 
unto  Abel  and  to  Beth-maachah  but  in  1  Kings  xv.  20,  both 
places,  unquestionably  in  consequence  of  their  proximity,  are 
called  by  a  single  word,  Abel-beth-maachah  :  u  Benhadad  smote 
Ijon,  and  Dan,  and  Abel-beth-maachah,  and  all  Cinneroth,  with 
all  the  land  of  Naphtali.”  In  other  passages  Abel  is  spoken  of 
without  the  addition  of  any  other  word,  as  in  2  Sam.  xx.  18,  for 
example.  In  2  Chron.  xvi.  4,  in  the  repetition  of  the  account 
of  Benhadad,  Abel  is  given  as  Abel-maim,  which,  however,  is 
no  other  place  than  that  which  in  2  Sam.  xx.  19  is  spoken  of 
as  a  city  u  peaceable  and  faithful — a  mother  in  Israel,”  i.e.  one 
of  the  chief  cities.  Reland,4  who  was  unacquainted  with  the 

1  Yon  Schubert,  Reise ,  iii.  p.  115. 

2  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  217. 

3  Thomson,  l.c.  Bib.  Sacra ,  iii.  p.  204. 

4  IT.  Reland,  Pal.  p.  519. 



position  of  the  modern  Ibl,  came  to  the  correct  conclusion  that 
the  place  could  not  have  been  an  eastern  one,  but  must  have 
been  a  Galilean  city  west  of  Paneas ;  for  in  2  Kings  xv.  29, 
where  mention  is  made  of  Tiglath-Pileser  the  king  of  Assyria, 
and  his  invasion  of  northern  Palestine,  the  places  which  he 
captured  are  probably  arranged  with  some  view  to  their  geo¬ 
graphical  position.  The  record  runs  :  “  In  the  days  of  Pekah 
king  of  Israel,  came  Tiglath-Pileser  king  of  Assyria,  and  took 
Ijon,  and  Abel-beth-maachah,  and  Janoah,  and  Kedesh,  and 
Hazor,  and  Gilead,  and  Galilee,  all  the  land  of  Naphtali,  and 
carried  them  captive  to  Assyria.” 

The  exact  position  of  this  place  Abel  seems  to  be,  then, 
on  the  west  side  of  the  valley  and  stream  which  run  from 
Merj  Ayun  to  Huleh,  and  below  the  opening  into  the  Merj, 
on  a  very  well  defined  tell  or  hill,  whose  slope  ran  far  away 
southward.  This  position  gave  it  its  advantages  for  raising 
fine  wheat,  and  to  fit  it  to  become  in  ancient  times  a  u  mother 
in  Israel,”  a  parent  of  cities.  But,  at  the  same  time,  the  account 
of  Tiglath-Pileser’ s  carrying  into  captivity  a  portion  of  the 
inhabitants,  shows  how  early  another  population  pressed  in,  and 
perhaps  mixed  with  the  remnant  which  had  been  left  there. 
But  regarding  the  changes  wrought  in  this  way,  we  have  no 
accurate  data  left  to  us. 

(2.)  The  Castle  Hunin, 

Thomson  was  the  first  traveller  who  ascended  the  peak  of 
Jebel  Hunin,  2500  feet  high,  from  the  Merj  Ayun,  and  the 
first  to  give  a  detailed  description  of  the  castle  on  its  summit. 
He  devoted  special  attention1  to  the  place,  since  he  believed  it 
to  be  the  site  of  the  ancient  city  of  Hazor,  the  former  metro¬ 
polis  of  North  Galilee.  The  castle  is  visible  from  Banias.  It 
is  rectangular  in  shape,  and  is  nine  hundred  feet  long  by  three 
hundred  broad.  The  central  castle  was  well  defended  with 
fosses  and  towers,  of  which  Thomson  has  given  a  detailed  de¬ 
scription.  The  main  point  of  interest  is,  however,  that  this 
great  structure,  which  is  evidently  Saracenic  in  character,  rests 
upon  a  foundation  of  the  same  large  bevelled  stones,  clamped 
with  iron,  which  are  found  in  the  remnant  of  Solomon’s  temple 
in  Jerusalem,  in  the  Hippicus  Tower,  also  there,  and  in  the 

1  Thomson,  l.c.  iii.  pp.  201—203. 



remains  of  some  of  the  Phoenician  cities,  Ruad  for  instance 
(the  Aradus  of  the  ancients),  and  more  strikingly  still  in  Tor- 
tosa1  opposite.  These  remains  all  seem  to  date  back  to  the 
epoch  of  Solomon.  Besides  the  places  just  alluded  to,  Thom¬ 
son  tells  us  that  they  have  been  seen  by  him  in  the  walls  of 
Banias,  and  at  esh-Shukif2  on  the  Litany.  Wolcott  observed 
the  same  architectural  forms  in  the  foundations  of  Baalbek,  on 
which  the  beautiful  temples  were  built  apparently  at  a  subse¬ 
quent  epoch.  They  have  also  been  traced  near  Byblus,3  at 
Jebail  (Gebal).  In  all  these  places  they  are  uniformly  different 
from  any  stones  left  by  Greek  and  Roman  architects,  and  must 
evidently  be  referred  to  a  very  remote  antiquity. 

These  facts  seem  to  warrant  our  referring  this  skilful  work- 
manship  in  stone  to  the  people  of  Gebal  or  Byblus,  the  Gib- 
lites,  who  were  included  in  the  promise  of  subjugation  by 
Israel  (Josh.  xiii.  5),  but  who  were  in  truth  never  subdued,  and 
always  were  connected  with  the  Phoenicians.  In  1  Kings  v. 
17,  18,  we  are  told  that  u  the  king  (Hiram)  commanded,  and 
they  (the  Giblites)  brought  great  stones,  costly  stones,  and 
hewed  stones,  to  lay  the  foundation  of  the  house,”  etc.  The 
prophet  Ezekiel  (xxvii.  9)  says  of  them,  that  they  were  the  ship 
carpenters  of  Tyre  ;  and  it  is  probable  that  they  were  teachers 
of  architecture  to  the  Jews  of  David’s  and  Solomon’s  time. 

From  this  it  is  right  to  infer  that  Hunin  is  a  place  of  great 
antiquity ;  and  situated  so  near  to  the  Tyrian  territory  as  it 
was,  it  is  not  unlikely  that  it  was  the  seat  of  an  ancient  Canaan- 
ite  prince.  This  gives  a  degree  of  colour  to  Thomson’s  opinion, 
that  that  seat  was  the  capital  of  Jabin,  the  head  of  the  alliance 
of  north  Canaanite  chieftains.  Hazor  is  mentioned  in  Josh, 
xix.  36-38  in  immediate  connection  with  Kedesh,  which  was 
but  a  short  distance  south  of  Hunin  ;  and  in  2  Kings  xv.  both 
places  are  spoken  of  together,  though  in  a  reversed  order, 
Kadesh  first  and  then  Hazor,  just  as  we  have  Gilead,  Galilee, 
and  all  Naphtali.  Further,  Josephus  tells  us  that  Hazor  lay 
upon  a  lofty  mountain,  impending  over  the  Samochonitic  Lake, 
which  happily  describes  the  location  of  Ilunin.  Kedesh,  which 

1  Thomson,  Missionary  Herald,  1841,  vol.  xxxvii.  p.  99. 

2  Thomson,  l.c.  Bib.  Sacra ,  iii.  p.  207. 

3  Wolcott,  Excursion  from  Sidon  to  Baalbek,  in  Bib.  Sacra,  1843, 
No.  vii.  p.  85  ;  comp.  Robinson,  in  Bib.  Sacra,  iii.  p.  213. 



is  mentioned  several  times  in  Scripture  in  immediate  connection 
with  Hazor,  lies  somewhat  farther  towards  the  south  :  it  has  a 
similar  situation,  a  similar  castle,  apparently  dating  from  the 
same  epoch ;  and,  according  to  Thomson,  everything  speaks  in 
favour  of  Hazor’ s  having  been  at  Hunin,  or  in  the  immediate 

The  only  thing  which  is  wanting  to  give  this  view  a  positive 
'  character,  and  to  commend  it  to  every  one,  is  the  want  of  any 
similarity  between  the  sound  of  the  modern  name  and  the  pre¬ 
sumed  ancient  one,  this  being  an  argument  of  the  first  degree 
of  importance  in  establishing  the  identity  of  modern  places 
with  ancient  ones.  It  is  true  the  situation  is  a  favourable  one, 
and  the  prospect  from  it,  as  described  in  the  glowing  words  of 
Thomson,2  is  one  of  the  most  comprehensive  in  the  whole  Holy 
Land.  It  embraces  the  Lebanon  range  and  Hermon,  Bashan 
and  Gilead,  Moab  and  Judah,  Samaria  and  Galilee,  the  plain 
of  Coele-Syria,  and  that  around  Lake  Huleh. 

(3.)  Kedesh ,  Kedesh- Naphtali :  the  KvSoiaaa  of  Eusebius  and 


The  mountain  lying  south  of  Hunin,  and  some  miles  distant 
from  it,  has  been  ascended  by  De  Bertou,  and  found  to  be  1258 
Paris  feet  above  the  sea.  We  have,  however,  no  detailed 
description  of  it.  Major  Robe3  passed  it  on  his  way  from 
Lake  Huleh  to  Safed,  but  did  not  ascend  it.  Eli  Smith  visited 
it  in  1844,  but  has  published  no  full  account4  of  it,  although 

1  Captain  Wilson,  in  his  recent  exploration,  made  important  excava¬ 
tions  on  the  site  of  these  ruins.  The  western  building  he  found  to  be  a 
tomb  containing  eleven  loculi ;  the  eastern  one  he  ascertained  to  be  a 
temple  of  the  sun,  of  about  the  same  date  as  Baalbek.  Close  to  the  temple 
was  an  altar  with  a  Greek  inscription,  and  a  finely  worked  sarcophagus. 
Stanley  conjectures  ( S .  and  P.  p.  393)  that  Hazor  is  above  Banias,  on  the 
southern  slopes  of  Mount  Hermon.  Robinson,  however,  on  what  seems 
more  adequate  authority,  places  its  site  at  Tell  Khuraibeh,  one  hour’s 
distance  south  of  Kedesh.  See  B.  P.  iii.  365.  Porter,  too,  in  his  Five 
Years  in  Damascus ,  vol.  i.  p.  304,  has  some  remarks  worth  consideration 
respecting  the  site  of  Hazor.  His  theory  has  the  more  probability,  from 
the  similarity  between  the  name  Hasur  which  he  heard,  and  the  ancient 
Hazor. — Ed. 

2  Thomson,  l.c.  iii.  p.  203. 

3  Major  Robe,  l.c.  Bib.  Sacra ,  1843,  p.  11. 

4  Bib.  Sacra,  vol.  iii.  p.  203. 



he  wrote  out  a  full  manuscript  report.  Robinson  did  not 
extend  liis  researches  thither.  De  Bertou1  tells  us  that  he  saw 
some  inscriptions  there,  but  he  did  not  copy  them,  and  makes 
only  an  incidental  allusion  to  them.  Benjamin  of  Tudela2 
visited  the  place  in  1165,  and  speaks  of  it  as  Kedesh-Naphtali. 
He  found  no  Jews  living  there  then,  but  discovered  a  few 
graves  of  rabbins,  showing  that  at  an  earlier  period  there  had 
lived  there  people  of  his  own  religious  communion. 

The  king  of  Kedesh  was  conquered  at  the  time  of  Joshua, 
in  common  with  the  other  Canaanite  chieftains  of  the  north  : 
the  place  is  often  alluded  to  in  connection  with  Hazor  and 
other  strong  posts  of  that  region  (Josh.  xii.  19).  At  the 
subsequent  distribution  of  the  country,  Kedesh  was  assigned  to 
the  tribe  of  Naphtali  (Josh.  xix.  37),  and  was  afterwards,  under 
the  title  of  Kedesh  of  Galilee,  made  one  of  the  cities  of  refuge 
to  which  those  who  had  committed  accidental  manslaughter 
could  flee,  and  be  spared  the  retribution  by  blood  which  was 
allowed  under  other  circumstances  by  the  Mosaic  law.  The 
two  other  places  named  as  cities  of  refuge  were,  Shechem  on 
the  mountains  of  Ephraim,  and  Hebron  on  the  mountains  of 
Judah  (Josh.  xx.  7).  Kedesh,  too,  was  one  of  the  three  cities 
in  Naphtali  which  were  made  over  to  the  Levites  (Josh.  xxi. 
32)  ;  a  place,  therefore,  not  without  importance.  It  gains  its 
greatest  celebrity,  however,  as  the  home  of  the  hero  Barak,  who 
was  summoned  from  Kedesh  by  the  prophetess  Deborah  to 
engage  in  battle  with  Sisera  (Judg.  iv.  6,  10).  Sisera  was  the 
chief  captain  of  a  mighty  prince,  Jabin  (the  second  of  that 
name,  the  first  having  been  killed  by  Joshua).  He  lived  at 
Hazor,  and  for  twenty  years  had  held  Israel  in  vassalage. 
Barak,  we  are  told,  collected  from  Zebulon  and  Naphtali  ( i.e . 
from  the  south-west  and  the  north-west)  ten  thousand  men, 
and  withdrew  to  Tabor,  at  the  foot  of  which  the  battle  was 
fought  and  the  victory  won.  Hazor  can  therefore  scarcely  be 
looked  for  in  the  neighbourhood  of  Kedesh,  nor  in  the  imme¬ 
diate  district  west  of  the  waters  of  Merom ;  for  had  it  been 
there,  how  would  Barak,  in  a  city  so  little  removed,  have  been 
able  to  summon  his  men,  and  make  all  the  preparations  for  war? 
Regarding  Sisera,  wTe  are  told  that  he  lived  at  Harosheth  of 

1  C.  de  Bertou,  l.c.  Bullet,  xii.  p.  145. 

2  Benjamin  von  Tudela,  Itinerar.  ed.  Asher,  1840,  i.  p.  82. 



the  Gentiles, — a  name  which  is  mentioned  three  times  (Judg. 
iv.  2,  13,  16).  Yet  in  1  Sam.  xii.  9  we  are  told  that  Israel 
came  under  the  dominion  of  Sisera  at  Ilazor.  The  situation 
of  Harosheth  is  undetermined  by  actual  discovery,1  yet  it  seems 
probable  that  it  must  be  looked  for  in  the  neighbourhood  of 
Razor,  the  residence  of  the  king,  and  that  it  was  not  in  the 
immediate  vicinity  of  Kedesh,  on  the  south-west  corner  of 
Lake  Huleh,  where  it  lias  been  set  arbitrarily  on  some  maps. 
There  is  no  argument  for  this  position  in  the  biblical  narrative. 
In  Judg.  iv.  13  we  are  told  that  u  Sisera  gathered  together 
all  his  chariots,  even  nine  hundred  chariots2  of  iron  (in  contra¬ 
distinction  to  the  common  wooden  ones),  and  all  the  people 
who  were  with  him,  from  Harosheth  of  the  Gentiles  unto  the 
river  of  Kishon.”  The  result  is  given  in  ver.  15  :  “  The  Lord 
discomfited  Sisera,  and  all  his  chariots,  and  all  his  host,  with 
the  edge  of  the  sword  before  Barak,”  so  that  Sisera  alighted 
from  his  chariot,  and  fled  towards  Harosheth  on  foot :  the 
direction  is  not  given  us.  Then  follows  the  account  of  his 
reception  in  the  tent  of  Heber,  and  the  manner  in  which  he 
met  his  death  at  the  hands  of  Jael.  It  has  been  common  to 
transfer  the  locality  of  this  story  to  the  west,  but  it  seems  to  be 
without  good  reason.  But  if  Harosheth  of  the  Gentiles  is  to 
be  understood  as  a  general  gathering-place  of  people  of  various 
tribes  and  nations,  it  seems  natural  to  locate  it  on  the  east  side 
of  the  Jordan,  east  of  Banias,  and  at  the  base  of  Hermon,  for 
that  region  has  always  been  characterized  as  a  rendezvous  of 
Syrians  from  the  north.  And  it  is  just  there  that  we  find  the 
locality  of  the  Hazuri,  discovered  by  Burckhardt,  and  which  I 
am  led  to  believe  indicates  the  site  of  the  ancient  Hazor. 

Eusebius  and  Jerome  give  in  the  Onomasticon  (under  Cades) 
no  new  information  regarding  the  locality  of  Kedesh,  which 
they  hold  to  be  identical  with  Kedoissa :  the  first  states  that  it 
is  eight,  the  second  that  it  is  twenty,  miles  from  Tyre;  but  both 
agree  that  it  is  near  Paneas.  They  confirm  the  statement  of 
Josephus,  that  the  place  lay  on  the  confines  of  Galilee  and  Tyre, 
from  which  circumstance  this  populous  border  city,  which  lacked 
none  of  the  materials  of  war,  was  always  full  of  bitterness 
against  the  Galilseans,  and  ready  for  battle  with  them.  The 

1  Yon  Raumer,  Pal.  p.  126. 

2  Keil,  Commentar  zu  Jos.  p.  207  (trans.  in  Clark’s  For.  Theol.  Library). 



territory  was  subsequently  overrun  by  Tiglath-Pileser  as  far  as 
to  this  border  city  (2  Kings  xv.  29). 

Kobinson,1  who  doubts  the  identity  of  Hunin  and  Hazor,  is 
inclined,  in  view  of  the  want  of  water  at  the  former  place,  the 
probable  nearness  of  Kedesh  to  the  lake,  and  the  consecutive¬ 
ness  of  the  Galilaean  localities  mentioned  in  several  places  (Josh, 
xix.  35-37 ;  2  Kings  xv.  29),  to  place  Hazor  south  of  Kedesh. 
He  expected  to  find,  between  Kedesh  and  Safed,  ruins  which 
should  confirm  him  in  his  doubts.  He  did  not  know  that,  in 
1844,  Eli  Smith  discovered2  important  ruins  three  miles  south 
of  Kedesh,  although  the  name  bore  no  resemblance  to  that  of 
Hazor.  It  was  called  el-Chureibeh.3  The  place  was  not  visited 
by  Smith  in  person,  who  only  heard  of  its  existence  from  the 
country  people.  Should  it  prove  to  be  the  Hazor  of  the  Old 
Testament,  the  spring  near  it  would  probably  be  found  to  be 
the  En-hazor  of  Josh.  xix.  37. 

(4.)  Safed  or  Safet. 

The  south-western  arm  of  the  Hermon  system,  extending 
along  the  west  side  of  the  Hasbany  and  the  Lake  el  Huleh, 
Jebel  Safed,  received  its  name  from  the  city  and  the  castle  of 
Safed,  which  lie  on  the  extreme  southern  elevation  of  the  long 
range,  where  it  declines  steeply  eastward  towards  el-Huleh  and 
southward  towards  the  lake  of  Tiberias.  Irby  and  Mangles 
visited  the  place  in  1818;  Burckhardt,  in  1812,  ascended  it  in  four 
hours  from  Jacob’s  Bridge.  The  place  had  then  six  hundred 
houses,  a  quarter  of  them  being  occupied  by  J ews  ;  the  place 
being  one  of  those  which  they  esteem  holy,  although  it  has  no 
recorded  connection  with  the  history  of  their  nation. 

Bobinson4  visited  Safed  in  June  1838,  Thomson  after  the 
great  and  destructive  earthquake  of  1837,  and  Wilson  in  1843. 
At  the  time  of  that  great  convulsion  the  place  had  a  population  of 

1  Robinson,  Bill.  Research,  ii.  p.  435 ;  and  Bib.  Sacra ,  iii.  p.  212. 

2  Bib.  Sacra ,  May  1847,  vol.  iv.  p.  403. 

3  Capt.  Wilson,  in  his  recent  tour,  discovered  a  hill  a  little  more  than 
two  miles  south-east  of  Kedesh,  on  which  were  important  ruins :  he  could 
trace  the  walls  of  the  citadel,  and  a  portion  of  the  wall.  He  regards  this 
place  as  the  site  of  Hazor,  instead  of  accepting  Tel  Chureibeh  as  the  locality. 
— Ed. 

4  The  reader  is  referred  to  full  details  regarding  Safed  in  Robinson’s 
Bibl.  Researches ,  and  in  Wilson’s  Lands  of  the  Bible. — Ed. 



about  10,000,  of  whom  the  half  were  Jews.1  Safed  stood  at  the 
centre  of  a  district  which  felt  the  shock  most  sensibly,  and  most 
of  the  city  was  seriously  injured.  The  buildings  were,  however, 
soon  repaired ;  and  at  the  time  of  Robinson’s  visit,  in  the  next 
year,  the  place  was  well  on  the  way  to  its  restoration.  The 
peculiar  structure  of  the  rows  of  houses  up  the  side  of  the  hill 
has  been  the  source  of  much  destruction  both  of  life  and  pro¬ 
perty  ;  for  the  toppling  over  of  the  higher  rows  carried  ruin  to 
all  below.  The  houses  of  the  Jews’  quarter,  being  the  poorest 
constructed  of  all,  suffered  the  most.  The  castle,  which  has 
been  esteemed  a  very  strong  structure,  was  rent  completely  into 
fragments,  with  a  great  loss  of  life  to  those  who  had  fled  thither 
for  security.  Thomson,2  the  American  missionary  at  Beirut, 
hastened  thither  with  all  speed,  bringing  a  physician,  and  such 
supplies  as  could  be  transported;  yet  all  that  could  be  done  was 
insufficient  to  meet  the  wants  of  the  terrified  and  flying  popu¬ 
lation.  The  hasty  departing  from  the  city  of  those  who  had 
been  spared,  recalled  to  Thomson’s  mind  the  flight  of  Lot  and 
his  daughters  from  Zoar  at  the  time  of  the  destruction  on  the 



The  district  in  which  Safed  is  found  was  probably  once 
included  within  the  ancient  limits  of  Naphtali  (Josh.  xix. 
32-40)  ;  and  Herbelot  considers  that  it  was  the  former  capital 
of  the  tribe,  although  no  mention  is  made  of  the  place  either 
in  the  Old  Testament  or  in  the  New.  Maundrell3  holds 
that  this  was  the  place  which  the  Saviour  had  in  mind,  and 
probably  in  sight,  when  He  spoke  of  a  city  upon  a  hill  that 
could  not  be  hid  (Matt.  v.  14). 

The  elevated  situation  of  Safed  ensures  it  fresh  and  pure 
air  in  summer,  and,  like  Jerusalem,  it  enjoys  a  healthy  climate: 
in  winter,  numerous  clouds  gather  around  the  two  round  hills 
which  tower  up  a  half-hour’s  distance  farther  north.  The 
country  in  the  immediate  neighbourhood  of  the  city  has  extensive 
vineyards,  olive  plantations,  and  gardens,  in  which  the  pome¬ 
granate  and  the  flg  flourish.  The  valleys  around  are  very 
fruitful.  The  rearing  of  these  articles,  the  dyeing  with  indigo, 
the  weaving  of  woollen  stuffs,  occupy  the  inhabitants,  who,  on 

1  Wilson,  Lands  of  the  Bible ,  ii.  p.  154. 

2  Thomson,  Visit  to  Safed ,  in  Missionary  Herald ,  Jan.  1837. 

3  An  opinion  which  has  been  repeated  by  most  recent  travellers. — Ed. 



account  of  their  industry,  have  a  deserved  prominence  over 
those  of  some  of  the  neighbouring  towns.  Their  high  situation 
assures  them  an  extensive  view,1  especially  from  the  castle :  at 
the  south-east,  Lake  Tiberias  is  seen ;  at  the  east  the  elevated 
table-land  of  J olan  (Gaulonitis),  intersected  by  deep  valleys  and 
gorges  running  to  the  sea;  beyond  that  the  limits  of  the  Leja 
(the  Hauran)  can  be  discerned,  from  which  rises  in  marked 
pre-eminence  a  single  peak,  Jebel  Kuleib,  or  Kubeib  (Kelb) 
Hauran,  the  Hauran  dog,  which  Col.  Leake  considers  to  be  the 
Mount  Alsadamus2  of  Ptol.  v.  15.  Farther  south,  beyond  the 
lake  and  the  Ghor,  are  seen  the  ranges  of  Ajlun  and  el-Hossn, 
in  the  ancient  country  of  Bashan  or  Batanea ;  in  the  south  rise 
Tabor  and  the  Samaritan  mountains  ;  directly  east  and  north 
are  naked  peaks,  while  Hermon  is  generally  veiled  from  sight 
by  the  intervening  clouds. 

Note  by  the  Author. — Situation  of  ITazor ,  the  capital  city 
of  king  Jabin ,  and  the  metropolis  of  northern  Canaan ,  on 
the  east  side  oj  the  Waters  of  Merom ,  and  identical  with  the 
ruins  of  Hazuri  near  Sheikh  Oman  el  Hazur  or  Ain  el 
Hazuri  (the  En-hazor  of  the  ancient  Jewish  history ). 

It  remains  for  me  to  state  the  grounds  of  my  dissent  from  the 
opinions  already  laid  before  the  reader  regarding  the  situation  of 
Hazor,  which  has  been  supposed  by  nearly  all  travellers  to  be 
upon  the  west  side  of  the  waters  of  Merom  and  the  sources  of 
the  Jordan.  I  think  it  is  to  be  looked  for,  on  the  contrary,  in 
the  ruins  of  the  place  called  Hazuri,  which  Burckhardt  names 
in  his  work,  but  which  he  failed  to  connect  with  the  very  im¬ 
portant  place  which  we  know  the  ancient  Hazor  must  have  been. 
He  passed  on  the  Damascus  road,  running  east  from  Banias, 
after  a  walk  of  an  hour  and  a  half,  a  spring  known  as  Ain  el 
Hazuri,  and  learned  that,  at  an  hours  distance  still  farther 
north,  lay  the  ruins  of  a  city  called  Hazuri.  Thomson  received 
a  confirmation  of  this  fact  while  he  was  at  the  citadel  of  Banias, 
he  being  told  that  at  a  very  short  distance  away  there  is  a  very 
ancient  ruin  called  Sheikh  Othman  el  Hazur.  This  did  not 
remind  him  of  that  very  old  city  of  northern  Canaan,  wdiose 
name  was  so  identical  in  sound,  and  which  played  so  important 

1  Robinson,  Bibl.  Research,  ii.  p.  438 ;  TYilson,  Lands ,  etc.,  ii.  p.  159. 

2  Col.  W.  M.  Leake,  Preface  to  Burckhardt,  Trav.  p.  xii. 



a  part  in  Jewish  history,  the  reason  clearly  being  that  the  idea 
that  Hunin  was  the  ancient  Hazor  had  so  firmly  taken  posses¬ 
sion  of  his  mind.  As  the  distance  of  the  ruins  is,  at  the  most, 
not  more  than  two  and  a  half  hours  from  Banias,  and  they  are 
not  more  than  an  hour’s  walk  from  the  citadel,  it  is  to  be  hoped 
that  some  future  travellers  will  take  pains  to  ascertain  whether 
I  am  correct  in  supposing  that  the  ancient  Hazor  was  identical 
with  the  el-Hazuri  alluded  to  by  Burckhardt.  But  till  there  be 
found  good  reason  for  thinking  that  I  am  wrong,  I  must  believe 
Kiepert1  justified  in  connecting  the  twTo  places  on  his  map  of 
Palestine,  as  was  the  case  in  the  time  of  the  judges  and  kings. 

My  grounds  for  this  conviction  are  as  follows : — First ,  The 
remarkable  and  very  close  similarity  in  the  names  in  a  district 
very  little  visited,  in  which  the  old  indigenous  appellations 
perpetuate  themselves  from  age  to  age  and  from  century  to 
century  with  almost  no  change.  Secondly ,  The  commanding 
position  which  was  chosen,  lying  as  it  did  upon  the  direct  road 
between  upper  Canaan  and  the  Syrian  Damascus.  Its  history 
seems  to  extend  back  to  the  very  earliest  pre-Israelitic  period. 
Lying  as  it  did  upon  the  main  highway  between  upper  Canaan 
and  Damascus,  it  formed  an  excellent  situation  on  which  sub¬ 
sequently  to  build  an  Israelite  fortress  above  the  sacred  spring 
which  supplied  the  head  waters  of  the  Jordan.  The  position 
was  one  which  was  capable  of  becoming  of  the  same  interest 
as  a  border  city  of  Israel  as  it  had  been  under  Jabin,  on  account 
of  its  ancient  location  on  the  confines  of  the  Syrian,  Damascus, 
and  Canaanite  territory.  Thirdly ,  It  is  not  a  matter  destitute 
of  weight,  that  Burckhardt  speaks  of  the  shrine  of  a  Moslem 
saint  upon  the  Damascus  road — since  the  Mohammedans  often 
bury  their  holy  men  in  places  of  historical  importance — and 
that  this  Ain  el  Hazuri,  or  spring  of  Hazuri,  singularly  corre¬ 
sponds  to  the  En-hazor  mentioned  in  Josh,  xix.,  where  Hazor 
is  separated  by  the  interposition  of  Edrei  and  Kedesh  from 
En-hazor.2  It  is  manifest  that  Hazor  and  En-hazor  were  two 
different  places ;  and  this  led  Eli  Smith,  in  looking  for  the 
location  of  the  latter,  to  set  it  at  the  profuse  spring  of  Mellahah 
on  the  west  side  of  Lake  el  Huieh.  Reland3  declares  his 

1  Iviepert,  Bibel  Atlas ,  nach  den  neuesten  und  besten  Hulfsquellen,  Tab.  iii. 

2  See  Keil,  Commentar  zu  Josua ,  p.  354. 

3  H.  Relandi  Pal.  pp.  123,  706. 



opinion  that  the  frontier  city,  Hazor-enan,  mentioned  in  Num. 
xxxiv.  9,  is  identical  with  the  spring  of  Hazor.  In  Eusebius 
and  Jerome  the  same  place,  under  the  simple  name  of  Euan,  is 
spoken  of  as  a  frontier  town  towards  Damascus ;  and  in  Ezek. 
xl.  17,  where  the  northern  boundary  is  given,  the  full  name 
Hazor-enan  is  found. 

In  confirmation  of  this  is  the  second  passage  in  the  Ono - 
masticon :  'Hvacrayp  tckrjpov  Ne^OaXeiy  rceLTcu  teal  avcorepco 
’ Aacop .  Jerome  repeats  :  Enasor  in  tribu  Nephtalim.  Po- 
sita  est  supra  Asor:  so  that  we  can  scarcely  doubt  that  the 
situation  of  both  Azor  and  En-hazor  was  east  of  Banias.  In 
Thomson’s  narrative,  the  very  ancient  ruins  of  the  city  receive 
no  name,  but  the  shrine  at  the  spring  is  called  by  him  Sheikh 
Othman  el  Hazur :  here,  however,  Burckhardt  seems  to  have 
observed  no  ruins. 

Fourthly ,  It  may  be  remarked,  that  in  the  account  of  the 
invasion  of  Tiglath-Pileser  (2  Kings  xv.  29),  the  arrangement 
of  the  names  of  places  is  such  that  Hazor  forms  the  transition 
from  the  cities  of  Naphtali — that  is,  the  last-named  in  tracing 
the  order  from  Kedesh  to  Gilead, — an  arrangement  which  cor¬ 
responds  accurately  with  the  geographical  order,  from  the  west 
side  of  the  sea  to  the  eastern  one,  and  thence  to  the  country  far¬ 
ther  inland.  Fifthly ,  From  Josh,  xi.,  where  the  conquest  over 
J abin  by  the  Hebrew  leader  is  narrated,  the  following  inference 
is  to  be  drawn.  Hazor  is  represented  as  the  royal  residence, 
which  Josephus  calls  ''Acrcopos,  and  which,  he  says,  vi rep /carat, 
ti) 9  ^eye^covLTLSo^  \iyvr)s  ;  which  Thomson  interpreting  to  refer 
to  a  high  mountain  overhanging  the  sea,  referred  to  Hunin. 
Bobinson,1  on  the  contrary,  remarks  that  the  passage  does  not 
necessarily  refer  to  any  eminence  at  all,  but  only  a  place  near 
to  the  sea :  thus  judging,  he  preferred  the  site  of  Kedesh  as 
the  probable  location  of  Hazor  to  Hunin,  ten  miles  farther 
north,  or  Banias,  still  farther.  But  Josephus,  in  his  description 
of  the  Samochonitic  Lake,  states  that  it,  with  its  marshes,  ex¬ 
tended  as  far  northward  as  Dan,  and  so  to  the  very  neigh¬ 
bourhood  of  Banias.  It  could  be  brought,  therefore,  into  near 
relations  with  Hazor.  This  is  made  the  more  certain  by  Keil’s 
remark,  that  the  Greek  of  Josephus  may  be  interpreted  as 
referring  to  the  district  lying  north  of  Lake  el  Huleh. 

1  Robinson,  Bib.  Sacra,  iii.  p.  212. 



In  Josh.  xi.  3,  among  the  people  who  are  named  in  contra¬ 
distinction  to  the  mountain  tribes  of  the  north  country,  the 
Hivites  are  mentioned  as  living  u  under  Hermon  in  the  land  of 
Mizpeh.”  The  country  referred  to  here  can  only  be  the  great 
plain  which  extends  north  of  Lake  Huleh,  from  its  narrow 
western  margin  eastward  past  Tell  el  Kadi  to  Banias,  and 
thence  on  to  the  outlying  spurs  of  Jebel  Heish,  on  which  lie 
the  ancient  ruins  of  Hazuri,  which  may  with  justice  be  said  to 
command  the  lake. 

It  is  only  upon  this  level  tract  that  use  could  be  made  of 
the  chariots,  which  would  have  been  useless  in  the  mountain 
land  at  the  west.  This  use  of  these  formidable  engines  of 
war,  especially  alluded  to  in  the  account  of  the  campaign  of 
Jabin  n.  king  of  Hazor  (Judg.  iv.  2,  13),  where  nine  hundred 
iron-bound  ones  were  employed,  was  particularly  adapted  to 
the  Syrian  plain  east  of  the  Jordan.  The  use  of  these  in  the 
mountain  land  may  have  been  the  cause  of  the  sudden  over¬ 
throw  of  Sisera,  since  in  the  highlands  of  Safed  they  would 
become  a  source  of  embarrassment  rather  than  of  help.  At  a 
third  period — at  the  time  of  the  Maccabees — allusion  is  made 
in  Josephus’  narrative1  to  a  n reSiov  'Aaojp,  whither  Jonathan 
withdrew  on  his  wray  from  Lake  Gennesareth  to  meet  king 
Demetrius ;  and  this  can  refer  to  no  other  place  than  the  great 
plain  of  Banias  and  el-Huleh. 

If  now  the  conflict  under  Joshua,  who  advanced  from  Gilmd 
(Josh.  x.  43),  i.e.  from  the  west  and  south  side  of  the  Jordan, 
took  place  at  the  w^est,  between  the  waters  of  Merom  and  Kishon, 
the  statement  made  in  Josh.  xi.  8  shows  that  a  part  of  Jabin’s 
forces  were  driven  north-westward2  towards  Sidon,  and  that 
another  part  was  driven  u  into  the  valley  of  Mizpeh  eastward,” 
i.e.  the  plain  of  Banias,  where  two  places  of  further  flight  stood 
open,  one  up  the  Hasbeya  vale,  the  other  by  the  Damascus 

The  next  step  in  the  sacred  narrative  is  (ver.  20),  that 
u  Joshua  turned”  (giving  up  the  pursuit),  u  and  took  Hazor,  and 
smote  the  king  thereof  with  the  sword;  for  Hazor  was  before¬ 
time  the  head  of  all  those  kingdoms.”  In  ver.  11  we  read 
that  ct  he  burned  Hazor  with  fire  ;”  and  ver.  13,  that  u  as  for 

1  H.  Relandi  Pal  pp.  262,  372,  597,  708. 

2  Keil,  Com.  zu  Jos.  p.  209. 



the  cities  that  stood  still  in  their  strength,  Israel  burned  none 
of  them,  save  Hazor  only.”  The  cities  which  stood  on  the 
hills  in  the  Phoenician  frontier  were  spared  this  it  seems.  In 
all  this  account  there  appears  no  reason  for  doubting  the 
identity  of  Hazor  and  el-Hazuri.  That  the  name  lived1  on 
after  the  destruction  of  the  city,  is  evident  from  the  allusion  in 
Judg.  iv.,  where  we  are  told  that  a  second  Jabin  king  of  Hazor, 
whose  chief  captain  Sisera  lived  at  Harosheth  of  the  Gentiles, 
had  again  become  powerful,  and  for  twenty  years  had  compelled 
the  Israelites  to  pay  him  tribute ;  a  vassalage  which  was  only 
ended  by  the  heroic  deeds  of  Barak  and  Deborah  on  Tabor. 


Nor  does  Hazor  disappear  then  and  there  from  history:  for 
Solomon,  the  great  patron  of  architecture,  we  are  told  expressly 
in  1  Kings  ix.  1 5,  built,,  in  addition  to  his  temple  and  palace  at 
Jerusalem,  Ilazor,  Megiddo,  and  Gazer  (which  the  Egyptians 
had  destroyed)  ;2  and  therefore  in  the  ruins  of  Hazuri  we  have 
reason  to  expect  to  find  traces  of  the  architecture  of  Solomon’s 
age :  for  although  Tiglath-Pileser,  in  his  conquest  of  Pekah 
the  king  of  Israel  (2  Kings  xv.  29),  captured  Ijon,  Abel-beth- 
maachah,  Janoah,  Kedesh,  and  Hazor,  together  with  Gilead, 
Galilee,  and  the  whole  land  of  Naphtali,  and  carried  the 
inhabitants  into  captivity;3  yet  we  can  hardly  deem  it  probable 
that  he  converted  the  places  themselves  into  hopeless  ruins : 
the  foundations  must  have  been  too  thoroughly  laid  for  that, 
as  we  know  from  the  instances  elsewhere  which  remain  to  the 
present  time. 

Yet  still,  in  spite  of  the  destruction  by  the  Assyrians,  the 
name  lived  on  till  the  time  of  the  Maccabees,  and  the  great 
contest  between  kino;  Demetrius  and  Jonathan  the  Maccabean 
took  place  upon  the  plain  of  Hazor  (1  Macc.  xi.  67). 

1  Ewald,  Gesch.  der  Volks  Israel ,  ii.  p.  253. 

2  Von  Raumer,  Pal.  p.  188. 

8  Comp.  Joseph.  Antiq.  ix.  11,  and  H.  Relandi,  Pal.  p.  697. 

VOL.  IT. 








E  now  advance  to  the  discussion  of  the  middle  course 
of  the  Jordan,  beginning  at  the  place  where  it 
emerges  from  Lake  el  Huleh,  and  continuing  on  to 
the  place  where  it  leaves  Lake  Gennesareth  to  enter 
upon  the  third  stage  of  its  course,  which  is  analogous  to  the 
second,  although  with  some  change  in  the  relative  proportions 
of  the  natural  features,  and  with  some  essential  differences  in 
the  physical  character  of  the  two. 

This  middle  course  extends  from  north  to  south  in  the 
normal  direction  of  the  whole  river  system,  and  is  of  almost 
the  same  length  with  the  upper  course,  which  reaches  from  the 
Hasbeya  spring  to  the  southern  extremity  of  Lake  el  Huleh,  a 
distance  of  ten  or  twelve  hours. 

The  real  emergence  of  the  J ordan  from  el-Huleh  has  been 
observed  by  few  travellers,  since  the  great  Damascus  road, 
which  they  usually  take,  crosses  the  Jacob  Bridge,  a  short 
distance  farther  south.  Only  von  Wildenbruch1  has  given 
more  attention  to  this  point  than  the  most  of  his  predecessors. 
According  to  his  barometrical  measurements  at  Jacob’s  Bridge, 
the  water  level  of  Lake  Huleh  does  not  vary  much  from  a 
hundred  feet  above  the  sea  (according  to  De  Bertou,  322 

1  Yon  Wildenbruch,  Prof.1.  in  il lonatsber.  der  Berlin.  Gesell.  vol.  iii. 
Plate  iii.  p.  251. 


22  7 

Paris  feet).  Wildenbruch  found  that  at  Jacob’s  Bridge  the 
water  of  the  Jordan  was  84*4  Paris  feet  above  the  sea.  If  his 
measurement  of  the  level  of  Lake  Tiberias  is  correct  (793  Paris 
feet  below  the  Mediterranean),  the  fall  of  the  Jordan  between 
the  bridge  and  the  lake  is  877*5  Paris  feet.  According  to  the 
measurements  of  De  Bertou,  the  hypsometrical  difference  be¬ 
tween  the  city  of  Tiberias  and  Hasbeya  is  956  French  feet.1 

According  to  Burckhardt,2 3  the  southern  extremity  of  Lake 
el  Huleh  is  about  three-quarters  of  an  hour’s  distance  above 
the  Jissr  Beni  Yakub,  or  Jacob’s  Bridge,  which  in  his  time 
designated  the  frontier  of  the  pashalics  of  Damascus  and 
Akka.  On  this  account  a  custom-house  was  stationed  there,"’ 
and  tribute  was  levied  upon  all  Christians  who  passed  over  the 
road.  This  disappeared  together  with  the  Turkish  guard-house 
at  the  time  when  Egypt  had  the  control  of  the  Syrian  govern¬ 
ment,  and  caravans  had  an  undisturbed  right  to  the  free  use 
of  the  road  to  Damascus.  Wilson  found  a  Turkish  garrison 
here  in  1843,  however  :  the  soldiers  were  in  the  greatest  dis¬ 
may  in  consequence  of  the  daily  expectation  of  an  incursion  of 
Beduins  from  the  Euphrates. 

There  are  to  be  seen  here  the  ruins  of  a  once  large  and 
stately  khan,  built  of  basalt,  on  the  east  bank  of  the  Jordan : 
only  scattered  blocks  among  the  grass  mark  the  place  where  it 
once  stood.  Yet  the  place  is  much  used  as  a  camping  ground4 
in  consequence  of  the  springs  found  there,  and  the  nearness  of 
the  sacred  river.  Of  the  castle  erected  there  by  the  crusaders 
only  a  few  fragments  remain. 

The  bridge  still  stands  in  tolerably  good  condition.  Yon 
Wildenbruch5  endeavoured  to  follow  the  course  of  the  Jordan 
down  from  it,  but  the  roughness  of  the  land  affected  his  ther¬ 
mometer  so  unfavourably  as  to  put  it  out  of  the  question. 
Three-quarters  of  an  hour  below  the  bridge  he  came  to  a  mill, 
in  whose  neighbourhood  was  a  square  fort  dating  back  to  the 

1  See  also  Schubert,  Reise,  iii.  p.  254 ;  and  A.  Petermann,  On  the  Fall 
of  the  Jordan ,  in  Journ.  of  the  Roy.  Geog.  Soc.  xviii.  p.  90. 

2  Burckhardt,  Trav.  p.  316. 

3  Schubert,  Reise ,  iii.  p.  258. 

4  Wilson,  Lands  of  the  Bible ,  ii.  p.  316 ;  Bove,  in  Bullet,  l.c.  iii.  p.  388. 

5  Wildenbruch,  MS.  communication ;  comp.  De  Bertou,  Mem.  sur  la 
depression ,  in  Bulletin  de  la  Soc.  de  Geog.  xii.  p.  164. 



times  of  the  Crusades.  He  did  not  dare  to  bathe  in  the  stream 
itself,  which  roars  and  foams  through  thickets  of  oleander  on 
both  sides,  and  which  he  calls  appropriately  a  continuous 
cascade.  He  selected  for  his  bath  a  mill-race  three  and  a  half 
feet  deep,  where  the  rapidity  of  the  stream,  although  much  less 
than  in  the  current  proper,  was  so  great  that  he  could  scarcely 
stand  without  supporting  himself  by  something. 

Jacob’s  Bridge,  with  its  three  arches,  is  forty-five  paces  in 
length  and  thirty  in  width,  is  built  of  basaltic  stone,  and  is  in 
good  condition,  it  having  been  repaired  by  Jezzar  Pasha.  The 
river  beneath  it  has  a  breadth  of  eighty  feet,  and  a  depth 
seldom  of  four  feet :  it  must  have  been  a  very  dangerous  place 
for  a  ford,  if  we  accept  the  legend  which  connects  it  as  such 
with  the  fortunes  of  the  ancient  patriarch.  The  plants  and 
shrubs  which  abound  on  the  shore  at  this  point  are  mainly 
the  oleander,  here  most  thrifty  and  attractive,  the  cross- thorn 
( Rhamnus  spina  Christi ),  the  wild  small-leaved  olive  (the 
zakkum  of  the  Arabs,  Eleagnus  angustifolins ),  and  where  there 
are  marshy  lands,  the  papyrus  sedge  ( Cyperus  papyrus)  in 
uncommon  size  and  abundance. 

This  bridge,  Jissr  Beni  Yakub,  i.e.  the  Bridge  of  the  Sons 
(also  Benat,  i.e.  the  Daughters,  a  name  which  Bobinson  thinks 
the  more  correct  one)  of  Jacob,  in  whose  neighbourhood  king 
Baldwin  in  1178  erected  a  stronghold,  in  order  that  he  might 
the  better  hold  the  country  in  check  and  command  the  Damascus 
road,  does  not  seem  to  have  been  built  at  that  time,  for  William 
of  Tyre  speaks  expressly  of  the  Vadum  Jacob ,  i.e.  the  Ford  of 
Jacob.  The  old  legend  was,  that  the  patriarch,  on  his  return 
from  Mesopotamia,  after  sending  messengers  to  his  brother  Esau, 
and  dividing  his  company  of  followers  into  two  parts,  passed 
over  the  Jordan  at  this  place  (Gen.  xxxii.  7,  8).  But  we  know 
from  the  biblical  narrative  that  Jacob  took  his  course  by  way 
of  Mahan  aim  and  through  Gilead — a  country  rich  in  pasturage 
for  his  numerous  flocks  and  herds — while  he  himself  (Gen. 
xxxii.  22)  took  his  two  wives,  and  the  two  maids,  and  the 
eleven  children,  and  crossed  the  ford  of  Jabbok.1  The  Jabbok 
mentioned  here  is  the  Wadi  Serka,  much  farther  to  the  south, 
and  an  easterly  tributary  of  the  Jordan.2  The  ford  is  even 

1  Yon  Raumer,  Paldst.  p.  243. 

2  See  Gesenius’  ed.  of  Burckkardt,  ii.  p.  599,  and  Note  to  p.  1060 ; 



now  recognised  at  Kalaat  Serka,  on  the  regular  Damascus  road 
which  runs  through  the  country  east  of  the  Jordan.  From 
that  point  Jacob  passed  along  the  lower  course  of  the  Jordan, 
and  thence  to  Succoth  and  Shechern.  The  connection  of  the 
Vadum  Jacob  is  therefore  proved  by  no  more  authentic  testi¬ 
mony  than  that  of  a  legend,  as  baseless  as  the  uncounted  num¬ 
bers  with  which  the  whole  country  swarms. 

Jacotin’s  map  gives  the  name  of  the  bridge  as  Jiser  Benat 
Yacub,  i.e.  the  Bridge  of  the  Daughters  of  Jacob.  He  derives 
this  from  Seetzen,1  who  thought  that  it  might  be  possible  to 
justify  or  to  find  some  basis  for  the  legend,  by  supposing  that 
the  other  portion  of  Jacob’s  followers  crossed  the  Jordan  here, 
and  that  the  fact  perpetuated  itself  in  the  name  of  the  spot. 
Through  this  ford,  where  subsequently,  and  at  a  date  not  now 
precisely  known  to  us,  the  bridge  was  built,  the  great  road  from 
Damascus  to  the  Sea  of  Galilee  ran,  passing  thence  to  Akka, 
the  chief  port  between  Carmel  and  Tyre.  It  thus  passed  round 
Xlermon  and  the  Anti-Lebanon,  while  the  direct  road  from 
Damascus  to  Sidon  and  Tyre  must  have  always  passed  directly 
over  the  whole  Lebanon  range.  The  three  avenues  of  com¬ 
munication  alluded  to  in  the  preceding  pages  are  the  chief 
ones  which  connected  the  very  ancient  city  of  Damascus  with 
northern,  middle,  and  southern  Canaan.  It  is  the  middle  road 
which  received  in  the  middle  ages  the  name  Via  Maris;2  it  was 
always  the  chief  avenue  between  Syria  and  the  great  Phoe¬ 
nician  cities.  It  is  uncertain  whether  it  received  its  name 
from  the  Mediterranean,  or  from  the  small  Sea  of  Galilee, 
which  it  passed  at  the  ancient  city  of  Capernaum  (Matt.  iv. 
13).  There  are  good  grounds3  for  receiving  either  interpreta¬ 
tion.  The  physical  character  of  the  Jordan  below  that  Vadum 
Jacob  was  unquestionably  the  controlling  cause  which  opened 
this  via  mavis  leading  from  the  land  of  culture,  although  of 
the  Gentiles  or  heathen,  to  upper  Palestine,  Zebulon,  and 
Naphtali ;  and  this  converted  Capernaum  into  an  important 
frontier  city,  and  a  chief  custom-house  station.  Its  officials, 

comp,  von  Raumer,  Das  ostliclie  Pal .  and  Edom ,  in  Annal.  i.a.l.  vol.  i. 
p.  553. 

1  Seetzen,  in  Mon.  Corr.  xviii.  p.  345. 

2  Quaresmius,  Elucid.  Terras  Setae.  T.  i.  lib.  i.  fol.  19. 

3  Gesenius,  Comment,  zu  Genesis ,  Pt.  i.  pp.  350-354. 



the  publicans  or  collectors  of  custom,  were  the  men  from  whom 
J esus  selected  several  of  His  disciples  (Matt.  ix.  9 ;  Mark  ii. 
14 ;  Luke  v.  27).  Isaiah  also  refers  to  the  same  locality,  where 
he  speaks  (ix.  1  and  following  verses)  of  the  nation  that  sits 
in  darkness  as  destined  to  see  a  great  light.  Through  these 
repeated  allusions,  this  spot  has  become  one  of  the  classic  places 
of  the  earth. 

The  historical  importance  of  this  Jacob’s  Bridge,  in  connec¬ 
tion  with  the  mercantile  interests  of  Palestine  at  the  present 
day,  is  not  less  than  it  was  at  the  time  of  the  Crusades. 
Modem  times  have  converted  it  into  an  important  military 
position,  commanding  as  it  does  one  of  the  great  roads  to 
Damascus.1  It  was  the  most  advanced  post  which  was  taken 
possession  of  by  Napoleon,  but  was  left  by  Murat  on  the  2d  of 
April  1799. 

Seetzen  did  not  follow  the  course  of  the  Jordan  any  farther 
southward,  as  he  was  anxious  to  penetrate  the  hill  country 
lying  east  of  Lake  Tiberias, — a  region  entirely  unexplored.’2 
He  could  find  no  one  who  would  venture  to  act  as  his  guide, 
such  was  the  untamed  rapacity  of  the  Beduins  in  that  quarter. 
At  last,  however,  an  Arab  agreed  to  take  him  to  his  sheikh,  who 
was  troubled  with  some  affection  of  his  eyes.  Seetzen,  who  was 
known  as  Sheikh  Musa,  and  who  also  enjoyed  the  reputation 
of  being  a  hakim,  made  use  of  subterfuge,  and  agreed  to  go 
into  the  interior  for  the  purpose  of  curing  the  eyes  of  the 
Beduin  chief.  His  course  was  at  first  along  a  range  of  basaltic 
hills  east  of  the  Jordan, — a  wild  and  desolate- looking  part  of 
Jaulan,  the  ancient  Gaulonitis.  After  two  hours  he  reached 
the  village  where  his  guide  lived ;  there  he  spent  the  night,  and 
the  next  day  took  horse  and  ascended  some  hills  which  gave 
him  a  very  fine  view  of  Lake  Tiberias.  His  course  took  him 
through  the  small  village  of  Tellanihje3  (more  correctly  et- 
Tell),  lying  on  the  margin  of  a  very  fruitful  plain  abounding 
in  aloes.  This  plain  reached  to  the  lake,  and  had  apparently 
been  formed  by  deposits  from  the  Jordan.  Thence  he  turned 
away  from  the  sea  into  the  dry  Wadi  Szemmak,  in  which  he 
found  the  ailing  chief  living.  The  case  was  a  clear  one  of 

1  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  p.  441. 

2  Seetzen,  i.a.l.  xviii.  pp.  346-348. 

3  For  its  position,  see  Seetzen’s  map. 



cataract,  and  all  cure  was  hopeless.  Yet,  in  order  to  be  able  to 
visit  the  rest  of  the  country  east  of  the  lake,  Seetzen  told  the 
chief  that  he  would  undertake  to  help  him  if  he  would  send  a 
guide  with  him  along  the  shores  of  the  lake  to  collect  a  kind  of 
herb  which  grew  there,  and  which  he  would  send  back  by  the 
hand  of  the  guide.  This  was  acceded  to,  but  the  latter  proved 
faithless,  refused  to  take  the  right  road,  forded  the  Jordan  near 
its  confluence  with  the  lake,  robbed  Seetzen  of  his  horse  and 
gun,  and  left  him  to  find  his  way  on  foot  along  the  already 
explored  west  bank  of  the  river  to  the  city  of  Tiberias.  The 
place  where  he  was  deserted  was  in  the  neighbourhood  of  the 
ruined  khan  of  Bat  Szaida,1  a  place  whose  historical  interest  he 
failed  to  discover. 

Josephus  gives  the  distance  from  the  Samochonitic  Sea  to 
Lake  Gennesareth  as  a  hundred  and  twenty  stadia,  i.e.  a  six 
hours’  march ;  but  Burckhardt  learned  that  it  is  not  over  half 
that  distance.  He  did  not  follow  down  the  border  of  the  stream 
farther  than  Jacob’s  Bridge,  however,  as  his  course  led  him 
westward  to  Safed.  This  part  of  the  Jordan  has  therefore 
never  been  visited  throughout,2  and  we  lack  any  description  of 
it,  though  it  is  to  be  inferred  that  it  is  a  brawling  and  rapid 
stream,  and  passes  between  steep  banks  of  limestone  and  basalt. 
Nothing  is  known  of  cascades  excepting  the  rapids  where  von 
Wildenbruch  was  obliged  to  turn  back  on  account  of  the  diffi¬ 
culty  of  carrying  his  barometer,  and  where  he  essayed  to  bathe. 
Eli  Smith  explored  the  country  for  an  hour’s  distance  north  of 
the  entrance  of  the  Jordan  into  the  Sea  of  Galilee,  and  found 
no  rough  water  there. 

In  the  course  of  this  little  excursion  he  first  reached  the 
fertile  plain  el-Batiheh  (alluded  to  by  Burckhardt  under  the 
name  of  Battykha),  which  seemed  to  him  a  tract  sometimes  inun¬ 
dated  by  the  rise  of  the  river.  It  is  hemmed  in  on  the  north  and 
east  by  high  hills ;  those  on  the  north  come  close  to  the  river, 
and  confine  it  to  a  very  narrow  bed.  The  appearance  of  the 
fertile  plain  el-Batiheh  was  such,  that  Seetzen  alluded  to  it  as  a 
delta  formation  of  the  Jordan,  formed  by  the  retarding  action 
of  the  south  wind  in  the  downward  course  of  the  river  at  the 
time  when  its  waters  are  heavily  freighted  with  the  mud  which 

1  Seetzen,  Mon.  Corresp.  xviii.  p.  348. 

2  See  Abulfedse  Syrias,  ed.  Koehler,  p.  447. 



it  brings  down  from  the  mountains.  The  river  here  is  less 
broad  than  at  the  Dead  Sea,  and  only  about  a  third  as  wide  as  it 
is  at  Jericho — sixty  to  seventy-five  feet :  the  water  has  an  idle 
motion  and  a  melancholy  aspect  as  it  creeps  through  the  plain ; 
in  some  places  it  can  be  waded,  but  in  others  it  is  too  deep. 

Mr  Smith  took  advantage  of  a  day  when  his  companion 
Robinson  was  ill  with  fever,  to  visit  the  ruins  of  et-Tell  (erro¬ 
neously  called  Tellanije  by  Seetzen),  which,  situated  on  a  hill 
not  far  away,  attracted  him  strongly.  His  course  led  him 
through  the  ruined  village  of  el-Aradj,  whose  houses  were  once 
built  of  basaltic  stones.  A  little  farther  he  encountered  the 
remains  of  the  village  of  el-Mes’adiyih ;  after  this,  of  Dukah,  a 
place  which  had  been  built  on  a  more  extensive  scale,  but  of  the 
same  basaltic  materials.  He  then  crossed  the  plain  el-Batiheh 
alluded  to  above,  and  observed  carefully  the  fellahin  called 
Ghawarineh,1  or  dwellers  in  the  Ghor,  and  saw  the  same  kind 
of  buffaloes  wallowing  in  the  swampy  ground  which  are  so 
abundant  in  the  marshes  of  el-Huleh.  The  plain  is  the  property 
of  the  Turkish  Government,  and  only  a  share  of  the  harvest  falls 
to  the  portion  of  the  poor,  insulted,  and  degraded  peasants  who 
till  it ;  a  race  of  men  prohibited  from  wearing  arms,  and  there¬ 
fore  at  the  entire  mercy  of  the  rapacious  Arabs.  They  are  a 
race  whose  position  is  analogous  to  that  of  the  pariahs  of  India; 
they  speak  the  Arabic  language,  but  they  are  the  especial  object 
of  detestation  to  the  Arabs  themselves.  Eli  Smith  is  the  only 
traveller  who  has  carefully  observed  them  :  he  estimates  their 
number  at  Zoar,  at  the  southern  extremity  of  the  Dead  Sea,  at  two 
hundred,  and  those  at  Jericho  and  the  plain  of  Batiheh  at  two 
hundred  families  and  a  hundred  and  fifty  families  respectively. 

From  this  plain  Smith  directed  his  course  northward  to  et- 
Tell,  the  most  extensive  of  all  the  ruins  in  the  neighbourhood, 
and  which  appears  to  have  been  the  chief  place  in  the  neigh¬ 
bourhood,  although  it  has  entirely  lost  its  old  name,  and  is  only 
used  by  the  Ghawarineh  as  a  place  to  store  their  grain.  The 
ruins  cover  a  large  part  of  the  hill  (Tell),  and  are  really 
extensive  :  they,  as  well  as  those  which  he  had  already  seen  in 
the  vicinity,  consisted  of  basaltic  stone. 

Seetzen,  at  the  time  of  his  visit,  conjectured  that  this  place 

1  Eli  Smith,  Bands  of  the  Ghawarineh)  in  Missionary  Herald ,  vol.  xxxv. 
pp.  87-89. 


was  the  ancient  Bethsaida  Julias,  on  the  east  side  of  the  Jordan, 
in  the  province  of  Gaulonitis, — a  place  which  had  previously 
been  confounded  with  another  Bethsaida,  on  the  west  side,  in 
Galilee.  Belaud  first,  and  after  him  Bachiene,  pointed  out 
the  incorrectness  of  confounding  two  places  so  different,  and 
showed  that  there  must  have  been  two  Bethsaidas,  one  on  each 
side  of  the  lake.  Seetzen  was  the  unconscious  discoverer  of 
them  both,  and  entered  them  both  in  his  map.  The  places 
remained  unexplored,  however,  till  the  time  when  Bobinson 
and  Smith  visited  their  neighbourhood.1  Both  places  were  in 
the  immediate  vicinity  of  the  Sea  of  Galilee,  although  its  waters 
do  not  touch  them  at  the  present  day  :  they  were  both  fishing- 
places  ;  and  the  name  Bethsaida  itself  gives  token  of  the  occu¬ 
pation  of  the  inhabitants,  Beth  signifying  u  place,”  and  Saida 
u  fishing.”  From  one  of  these  two  places  Jesus  chose  fishermen 
to  be  His  disciples,  in  the  other  He  fed  theynultitude  with  bread 
and  with  fishes. 

It  is  a  well-established  fact  that  Peter,  Andrew,  and  Philip 
were  from  Bethsaida  in  Galilee.  But  had  it  not  been  for  a 
decisive  passage  in  Josephus,  it  would  have  been  scarcely  sus¬ 
pected  that  allusion  is  made,  though  without  any  particulariza¬ 
tion,  in  the  gospel  narrative  to  a  second  Bethsaida.  Josephus 
tells  us  that  Philip,  the  son  of  Herod,  tetrarch  of  Itursea, 
Trachonitis,  Gaulonitis,  and  Batanea,  and  thus  the  ruler  of  the 
territory  east  of  the  Jordan  (comp.  Luke  iii.  1),  after  complet¬ 
ing  the  ornamentation  of  Paneas,  converted  Bethsaida,  a  mere 
hamlet  by  the  sea,  into  a  city,  placed  colonists  in  it,  gave  them 
rights  and  privileges,  and  called  the  place  Julias  in  honour  of 
Julia,  the  daughter  of  the  Boman  emperor.  This  Bethsaida 
cannot  be  rightly  transferred  to  the  west  side  of  the  sea,  as 
Brocardus  and  others  have  done,  because  the  tetrarchy  of 
Philip  did  not  extend  thither;  and  just  as  little  to  be  relied 
upon  is  the  opinion  of  the  learned  Lightfoot,  who  thinks  that 
the  Bethsaida  of  Galilee  mentioned  in  John  xii.  21  is  to  be 
located  on  the  east  side  of  the  sea,  giving  in  explanation  the 
statement  that,  in  an  enlarged  sense,  Galilee  was  sometimes  made 
to  embrace  territory  beyond  the  Jordan.  Cellarius2  thinks 

1  See  also  von  Raumer,  Pal.  pp.  121-123,  and  Notes  20  and  21. 

2  Chr.  Cellarius,  Notitia  Orbis  Antiqui,  Lips.  1706;  Asia ,  lib.  iii.  c.  13, 
fol.  633. 



that  the  question  is  one  of  the  most  difficult  in  the  whole  range 
of  biblical  geography:  and  it  was  so  in  his  days,  before  the 
researches  of  modern  travellers  threw  so  much  light  upon  it 
as  they  have  done  ;  but  now  it  is  nearly  or  quite  certain  that 
the  writers  of  the  gospel  narratives  refer  to  two  different 
Bethsaidas,  even  although  they  do  not  specifically  couple  the 
name  of  the  one  which  was  in  Gaulonitis  with  the  additional 
name  Julias,  which  it  bore.  Whatever  doubt  arises  about  the 
question  in  its  present  stage  of  investigation,  springs  from  the 
fact  that,  regarding  the  Bethsaida  of  Galilee,  we  have  only  the 
evidence  which  is  found  in  the  permanence  of  the  name  itself 
as  exhibited  in  the  modern  Bat  Saida  or  Szaida,  there  being  no 
ruins  to  mark  the  site  of  a  former  city.  Yet  no  conclusive 
argument  is  to  be  drawn  from  the  last  fact ;  for  the  same  is 
the  case  with  many  other  well-known  places  of  antiquity, 
whose  architectural  monuments  have  entirely  passed  away. 
Capernaum,  Banias,  Dan,  the  noble  city  of  Tiberias,  and  a 
hundred  others,  have  little  or  nothing  to  exhibit  of  their  former 

This  argument  may  be  applied  still  more  forcibly  to  the 
ruins  of  Tell,  on  the  eastern  side.  There  are  the  traces  of  a 
large  city,  but  every  architectural  decoration  has  passed  away. 
Yet,  aside  from  the  allusion  of  Josephus  to  an  important  capital 
there,  Pliny  has  not  passed  over  it  in  silence,  and  speaks  yet 
more  definitely  still  of  a  city  on  the  east  side  of  the  Jordan, 
and  in  that  neighbourhood :  “Jordanus  in  lacum  se  fundit — 
amoenis  circumseptum  oppidis,  ab  oriente,  Juliade  et  Hippo,” 
etc.  So  long  as  there  was  supposed  to  be  but  one  Bethsaida,  it 
was  extremely  difficult  to  harmonize  various  allusions  to  it ;  but 
when  it  was  found  to  be  almost  beyond  doubt  that  there  were 
two,  the  task  became  a  simple  one.  The  eastern  Bethsaida  is 
mentioned  only  twice  in  the  Gospels — in  Luke  ix.  10,  and  Mark 
viii.  22.  It  was  the  place  where  Jesus  fed  the  five  thousand  at 
one  time,  the  four  thousand  at  another  time,  and  restored  the 
sight  of  the  blind  man.  The  western  place  of  the  same  name 
is  most  prominently  brought  into  notice  as  the  original  home  of 
several  of  His  disciples.  It  is  evident,  moreover,  that  the  now 
deserted  shores  of  the  lake  were  in  continual  communication  at 
that  time  by  means  of  boats. 




1.  Names. 

Chinnereth  is  the  oldest  name  which  this  sea  bears  in  the 
books  of  Moses  (Num.  xxxiv.  11,  and  Deut.  iii.  17).  Joshua 
seems  to  have  taken  the  name  (xii.  3)  from  a  place  of  which 
we  only  know  this,  that  it  was  on  the  shore  of  the  lake  (Josh, 
xix.  35).  That,  however,  it  occupied  the  same  site  which 
afterwards  was  covered  with  the  city  of  Tiberias,  which  Herod 
built,  and  which,  according  to  Jerome,  bore  the  name  of 
Chennereth,  is  destitute  of  historical  proof ;  for  the  site  of 
Tiberias  belongs  to  the  territory  of  Zebulon,  while  Chinnereth 
lay  in  the  more  northerly  domain  of  Naphtali  (Josh.  xix.  35), 
which  embraced  only  the  northern  half,  the  sea-coast.  This  is 
also  clearly  shown  in  the  account  of  Benhadad’s  conquest  of 
the  land  of  Chinnereth  (1  Kings  xv.  20),  where  allusion  can 
only  be  made  to  the  shore  of  the  northern  half  of  the  basin : 
the  place  mentioned  there  would  seem  to  be  an  ancient  city 
of  Chinnereth,  which  subsequently  disappeared,  and  whose 
situation  cannot  on  any  grounds  be  considered  as  identical  with 
that  of  the  more  modern  Tiberias.  There  are  other  grounds, 
too,  for  not  accepting  the  identity  of  the  two  places.1  These  I 
shall  allude  to  on  a  future  page.  The  name  Chinnereth,  it 
may  be  remarked,  is  not  used  in  reference  to  the  sea  in  the 
Old  Testament,  excepting  to  designate  the  boundaries  of  some 
of  the  tribes.  Far  more  common  in  the  Bible  is  the  mention 
of  the  Sea  of  Gennesareth,  the  origin  of  whose  name  is  uncer¬ 
tain,  although  it  is  educed  by  Lightfoot  from  Chinnereth  : 
transiit  nomen  Chinnereth  in  Genesor.  The  name  is  mentioned 
several  times  in  the  New  Testament,  although  in  some  of  the 
allusions  not  the  sea  alone  is  referred  to,  but  a  portion  of  the 
coast  (see  Matt.  xiv.  34,  and  Mark  vi.  53).  This  appears  to 
indicate  a  small  tract  of  the  western  shore  about  midway  between 
1  Rosenmuller,  Bill.  Alter thk.  ii.  Pt.  ii.  p.  76. 



the  northern  and  the  southern  extremities  of  the  lake.  Josephus 
gives  the  dimensions  of  this  u  land  of  Gennesareth”  as  only 
thirty  stadia  in  length  and  twenty  in  breadth.  Robinson 
supposes  that  the  place  corresponded  with  the  modern  fertile 
tract  called  el-Ghuweir,  the  little  Ghor,  which  lies  between 
Mejel  at  the  south  and  the  Khan  Minyeh  at  the  north.  This 
is  strengthened  by  the  glowing  description  which  Josephus 
gives1  of  the  spot,  coupled  with  the  etymological  meaning  of 
the  word  Genesor,  u  garden  of  riches :  ”  compare  Lightfoot : 
“  ab  amoenitatem  regionis,  liortis  ac  paradisis  refertissimge.” 
The  name  Genesera  is  the  one  most  frequently  applied  to  the 
lake  by  Josephus,  Strabo,  Pliny,  and  the  Romans.  The  name 
Sea  of  Galilee,  which  appears  in  Matt.  iv.  18,  on  whose  waters 
the  fishermen  Peter  and  Andrew  were  casting  their  nets,  was 
derived  from  its  situation  contiguous  to  Galilee,  a  province 
which  did  not  extend  to  the  eastern  side  of  the  lake.  This 
name  must  have  been  a  comparatively  modern  one,2  since  the 
name  Galilee  was  originally  applied  merely  to  a  small  tract,  in 
connection  with  which  other  districts  like  Kedesh  and  Naphtali 
were  sometimes  mentioned  (see  2  Kings  xv.  29).  At  the  time 
of  Solomon  and  Hiram,  Galilee  was  still  an  unimportant  dis¬ 
trict,  and  appeared  to  the  latter  to  be,  with  its  twenty  cities, 
an  insignificant  gift  to  be  made  by  Solomon  in  return  for  the 
cedars  of  Lebanon  which  had  been  carried  to  Jerusalem  for 
the  temple  and  the  new  palace.  It  was  only  with  the  extension 
of  the  meaning  of  the  name  Galilee  under  the  Maccabees, 
when  Zebulon  and  Naphtali  were  added  to  the  original  dis¬ 
trict,  and  the  whole  west  coast  was  known  as  Galilee,  that  the 
lake  itself  could  receive  the  same  name.  After  the  city  of 
Tiberias  became,  at  the  time  of  Herod  Antipas,  the  metropolis 
of  Galilee,  the  name  of  this  capital  wras  used  generally  to 
distinguish  the  water  on  which  it  lay ;  and  so  we  have,  as  in 
John  xxi.  1,  the  Sea  of  Tiberias.  This  at  length  became  the 
general  designation  of  the  lake,  and  was  corrupted  into  Tabaria, 
which  is  the  Arab  name  at  the  present  day. 

1  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  pp.  399-414. 

2  Gescnius,  Comment,  zu  Jesaias ,  i.  p.  350. 



2.  Astronomical  and  Hypsometrical  Situation ,  Extent ,  Depth , 

and  Navigableness . 

At  the  sluggish  entrance  of  the  Jordan  into  Lake  Tiberias 
there  is  no  place  of  importance.  Between  Jacob’s  Bridge,  which 
is  eighty-four  feet  above  the  level  of  the  sea,  according  to  von 
Wildenbrucli,  and  the  surface  of  the  Sea  of  Galilee,  there  is 
somewhere  a  point  where  the  level  of  the  river  and  that  of  the 
ocean  are  identical,  but  this  place  has  never  yet  been  ascer¬ 
tained.  Symonds1  estimates  the  surface  of  Lake  Tiberias  to 
be  328  feet  below  the  level  of  the  Mediterranean,  von  Wilden- 
bruch  845  feet.  The  latitude  of  the  northern  extremitv  of  the 

t / 

Sea  of  Galilee  was  fixed  by  Lieutenant  Molyneux,2  during  his 
expedition  to  the  Jordan  in  1847,  to  be  32°  52-J-'  N.  The  heat 
at  noon  on  the  day  when  he  took  his  observation,  August  23, 
was  103°  Fah.  in  the  shade.  He  discovered,  in  the  course  of 
his  exploration  of  the  lake,  that  it  is  much  broader  as  well  as 
longer  than  it  has  been  supposed  by  those  who  had  been  unable 
to  sail  upon  it,  and  had  been  compelled  to  judge  by  the  eye. 
He  estimated  it  to  be  from  eight  to  nine  miles  broad,  and  about 
eighteen  long.  It  had  always  been  supposed  to  be  a  lake  of 
great  depth  :  he  found  this  to  be  a  mistake,  however,  as  the 
deepest  place  which  he  discovered  only  ranged  from  a  hundred 
and  twenty  to  a  hundred  and  fifty-six  feet.3  Molyneux’s  exa¬ 
mination  of  the  Sea  of  Tiberias  by  means  of  a  boat  was  one  of 


the  first  attempts  of  the  kind,  and  the  little  craft  was  carried 
from  the  Mediterranean, — an  operation  which  in  some  places 
was  attended  with  great  difficulty.  In  modern  times  there 
seems  to  be  no  use  of  this  lake  for  the  purposes  of  navigation  ; 
and  yet  at  the  time  of  the  Saviour  it  seems  to  have  been  much 
sailed  upon,  whole  fleets  being  sometimes  on  its  waters  at  once. 
When  the  forces  of  Titus  besieged  the  city  of  Tiberias,  large 
numbers  of  the  people  flocked  into  the  boats :  Vespasian  caused 

1  Dr  Petermann,  in  an  article  on  the  fall  of  the  Jordan,  in  vol.  xviii. 
Jour.  Lon.  Roy.  Geog.  Soc .,  thinks  it  unquestionable,  that  accurate  as  are 
Symonds’  general  measurements,  particularly  those  relating  to  the  Dead 
Sea,  some  great  and  unexplained  error  vitiates  his  estimate  of  the  depres¬ 
sion  of  Lake  Tiberias,  and  makes  it  altogether  untrustworthy. — Ed. 

2  Lieut.  Molyneux,  of  H.M.S.  “  Spartan,”  Expedition  to  the  Jordan  and 
the  Dead  Sea ,  in  Journ.  of  the  Roy.  Geog.  Soc.  xviii.  p.  107. 

3  W.  J.  Hamilton,  Address  to  the  Roy.  Geog.  Soc.  of  London ,  1848,  p.  76. 



other  ones  to  be  built  in  order  to  follow  them ;  and  a  naval 
engagement  ensued,  in  which  as  many  seem  to  have  perished 
at  sea  as  had  already  on  the  land.  Josephus  gives  the  number 
of  these  as  6500.  The  fishing  in  the  lake  now  seems  to  be 
carried  on  from  the  shore  alone.  In  the  last  century,  and 
early  in  this,  a  boat  was  seen  by  Pococke,  Seetzen,  and  Burck- 
hardt1  on  the  waters  of  the  lake,  but  at  last  it  disappeared, 
and  was  mentioned  no  more.  The  only  other  traveller  besides 
Molyneux  who  has  ventured  to  explore  Lake  Tiberias  by  means 
of  a  boat,  is  Count  de  Bertou.  The  results  of  his  observations 
are  given  on  his  own  map,  and  in  his  report  to  the  Geographical 
Society  of  Paris.  Unfortunately  we  are  unable  to  compare  it 
with  the  results  of  Molyneux’s  expedition,  since  the  untimely 
death  of  the  officer  in  command,  before  he  had  time  to  work  out 
what  he  had  done  into  intelligible  shape,  has  deprived  us  of 
many  of  the  most  valuable  fruits  of  the  English  expedition.2 

3.  The  Picturesqaeness  of  Lake  Tiberias. 

As  one  approaches  the  lake  from  the  west,  the  eastern  side 
being  inaccessible  even  at  the  present  day  in  consequence  of 
the  unsettled  state  of  the  country,  the  first  glimpse3  which  is 
gained  of  the  basin  of  the  Sea  of  Tiberias  is  from  the  summit 
of  Tabor,  whence  its  entire  outline  can  be  seen.  The  surface 
of  the  water  is  invisible,  however ;  and  even  from  the  Hattin 
peaks,  the  Mount  of  the  Beatitudes  according  to  the  legend, 
only  the  north-east  corner  can  be  descried,4  although  one 
would  get  the  impression  from  the  fanciful  and  hasty  descrip¬ 
tions  of  travellers,  even  the  most  recent,  that  the  whole  lake 
can  be  seen  in  all  its  beauty  from  some  of  the  adjacent  heights. 
This  is  not  true ;  but  instead  of  this  there  are  excellent  oppor¬ 
tunities  of  studying  the  high  but  evenly-levelled  mountain 
ranges  of  Bashan  and  Gilead,  as  well  as  those  of  Jaulan 
and  Hauran,  which  are  seen  towards  the  east  and  south.  As 

1  Burckhardt,  Trav.  p.  332.  See  Tristram,  p.  428. 

2  I  omit  at  this  point  the  detailed  result  of  De  Bertou’s  measurement  of 
the  distances  between  the  villages  on  the  shores  of  Lake  Tiberias:  the 
original  statement  may  be  found  in  the  Bulletin  de  la  Sac.  de  Geog.  Paris . 
1839,  xii.  pp.  146-149. — Ed. 

3  Roberts,  The  Holy  Land ,  vol.  x.  Plates  27,  28. 

4  Robinson,  Bib.  liesecirch.  ii.  p.  355. 



the  traveller  approaches  the  sea,  the  water  long  remains  con¬ 
cealed,  and  does  not  come  into  view  till  the  edge  of  the  deep 
basin  is  reached,  down  which  there  is  a  descent  of  more  than  a 
thousand  feet.  The  reasons  for  the  great  historical  interest  of 
the  lake  do  not  fail  to  strike  even  the  most  casual  observer,1  even 
although  the  landscape  cannot  be  compared  on  the  score  of  beauty 
with  many  others  in  the  world.  There  are  lacking  in  this  regard, 
not  mountains  of  height  enough  to  be  attractive,  but  those 
bold  forms  which  are  so  striking  in  the  eminences  amid  which 
the  Swiss  lakes  nestle :  there  are  also  wanting  the  rich  green 
meadows  and  the  attractive  forest  trees  which  are  found  in  the 
neighbourhood  of  the  American,  Scotch,  English,  and  Bavarian 
lakes,  with  their  mild  beauty.  Around  Tiberias  we  have  only 
bare  rocks,  some  light-coloured,  some  black,  a  shore  almost 
treeless,  and  whose  grass  even  is  withered,  while  the  dark  sur¬ 
face  of  the  lake  itself  is  unrelieved  by  a  single  white  sail.  And 
yet,  despite  all,  the  place  exerts  a  charm  upon  every  stranger 
who  approaches  it;  for  it  is  a  holy  place  in  the  land  both  of 
promise  and  of  fulfilment :  it  is  the  field  of  the  early  ministries 
of  Jesus,  the  home  of  His  disciples,  often  their  place  of  refuge 
from  their  persecutors :  its  solitary  places  have  often  been 
hallowed  by  the  words  and  deeds  of  the  Saviour.  And  this 
gives  to  the  landscape,  despite  its  present  desolate  appearance, 
a  peculiar  and  indestructible  charm  of  its  own, — a  charm  which 
reflects  itself  in  the  simple  records  of  the  Evangelists ;  as,  for 
instance,  in  the  allusions  to  the  throwing  of  the  nets  into  the 
sea,  the  abundant  supplies  of  fish  which  the  disciples  brought 
to  land,  the  scattered  sheep,  the  sheep  which  follow  the  good 
shepherd,  the  only  door  to  the  fold,  the  lilies  still  found  abund¬ 
antly  gracing  the  field,  and  many  others  which  will  recur  to 
the  reader. 

But  this  lake  must  not  be  supposed  to  be  destitute  of  its 
own  real  beauties  too,  particularly  in  the  spring  months,  before 
the  sun  has  power  to  wither  the  young  growths.  Seetzen 
tells  us2  that  in  all  Palestine  there  is  no  district  to  compare 
with  this  in  respect  to  natural  beauty,  —  not  now,  indeed, 
what  it  was  once,  when  art  lent  its  kindly  and  powerful  aid, 

1  Irby  and  Mangles,  Trav.  p.  294;  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  p.  380; 
Russegger,  Reise ,  iii.  p.  131 ;  v.  Schubert,  Reise,  iii.  p.  231. 

2  Seetzen,  in  Mon.  Corresp.  xviii.  p.  348. 



and  made  the  shores  of  Tiberias  one  of  the  gardens  of  the 
world.  The  present  aspect  of  the  spot — with  its  heaps  of 
ruins,  which  attest  the  action  of  past  earthquakes ;  the  whole 
eastern  shore  a  field  where  wild  Beduins  practise  unchecked 
their  arts  of  plundering ;  the  western  side  a  desolate  waste, 
exhibiting  here  and  there  the  hamlets  of  the  few  inhabitants 
who  take  the  place  of  the  once  dense  population — gives  no  clue 
to  the  appearance  which  Lake  Tiberias  bore  at  the  time  of  its 
past  glory.1 

If  we  turn  to  the  Tiberias  of  the  past,  we  find  that  Josephus 
praises  not  only  the  beauty,  but  also  the  fertility,  of  the 
shores  of  the  lake,  as  well  as  the  mildness  of  the  atmosphere 
there.  All  the  forest  trees  throve  there,  little  as  we  should 
think  it  now ;  and  whatever  was  planted  attained  an  excellent 
growth.  Walnuts,  he  goes  on  to  say,  which  generally  love  a 
cool  climate,  grew  in  profusion ;  and  together  with  them  the 
palm,  which  requires  the  intensest  heat.  Nor  were  there  lack¬ 
ing  figs,  olives,  and  groves,  which  need  a  temperature  inter¬ 
mediate  between  that  demanded  by  the  walnut  and  the  palm. 
Josephus  alludes  again  to  the  singular  character  which  the 
shores  of  the  Sea  of  Gennesaret  have,  of  uniting  productions 
which  generally  are  not  found  to  inhabit  the  same  region,  and 
says  that  this  is  only  possible  in  a  place  sheltered  by  a  system 
of  ascending  terraces.  lie  asserts  that  European  fruits  were 
able  to  thrive  there ;  and  that  such  was  the  nature  of  the 
climate,  that  vines  and  figs  would  ripen  ten  months  out  of  the 
year,  while  other  fruits  were  to  be  always  seen  in  a  perfected 

If  there  is  a  place  in  the  world  which  answers  the  condi¬ 
tions  which  Hippocrates  summed  up  in  the  expression,  the 
u  mingling  of  seasons,”  and  which  may  be  taken  as  the  ideal 
of  a  perfect  climate,  it  is  that  of  the  Sea  of  Galilee.  It  is  the 
nearest  possible  approach  to  a  perpetual  spring.  There  is  the 
same  harmony  in  the  natural  world  there  which  we  sometimes 
meet  in  the  characters  of  men — a  perfect  balance  of  parts.  And 
so  on  the  shores  of  Tiberias  we  have  the  finest  fruit  and  the 
most  perfect  growths  of  all  kinds  :  we  have  the  conditions  also 
which  ought  to  give  us  the  most  admirably  formed  animals  and 
the  highest  type  of  man.  So  long  as  men  were  expecting  to  find 

1  Yon  Schubert,  Reise,  iii.  p.  252. 



a  paradise  on  the  earth,  here  was  the  place  where  there  was  the 
most  encouragement  to  look  for  it.  With  all  the  change  in 
the  political  and  social  relations  of  men,  the  physical  character 
of  the  neighbourhood  is  not  changed,  excepting  so  far  as  has 
been  occasioned  by  the  neglect  and  the  idleness  of  the  inhabit¬ 
ants.  The  broad  sheltering  basin  of  the  lake,  with  its  terrace 
gradations,  is  particularly  favourable  to  the  growth  of  tropical 
productions  ;  and  even  at  the  present  day,  the  date  palm,  the 
citron,  the  pomegranate,  the  indigo1  and  rice2  plant,  and  the 
sugar-cane,3  are  found  there,  although  their  culture  is  miser¬ 
ably  neglected.  The  heights  around,  on  the  contrary,  are  visited 
by  cool,  refreshing  breezes.  The  free  draught  of  the  south 
wind,  up  the  direct  course  of  the  Ghor,  as  well  as  the  protec¬ 
tion  which  is  afforded  on  the  northern  side  against  the  cold 
winds  of  Asia,  together  with  the  moisture  which  is  indirectly 
furnished  by  the  snow-crowned  peak  of  Hermon,  which  towers 
grandly  in  view,4  cannot  be  overlooked  in  taking  an  estimate  of 
the  great  advantages  enjoyed  by  the  sheltered  basin  of  Lake 
Tiberias.  Josephus  alludes  particularly  to  the  number  of 
excellent  springs  which  are  found  in  its  neighbourhood,  as  a 
feature  by  no  means  to  be  overlooked.  And  in  view  of  all 
these  varied  attractions,  it  may  be  safe  to  conjecture,  that 
unimportant  as  are  the  benefits  derived  from  this  renowned  lake 
at  the  present  time,  in  the  future  its  industrial  value  may  again 
be  equal  to  wdiat  it  was  when  cities  dotted  both  its  shores,  and 
a  teeming  population  passed  their  life  by  its  waters. 

4.  Geological  Characteristics ,  Volcanic  Formations ,  Basalt 


As  we  enter  upon  the  discussion  of  the  geological  character 
of  the  basin  which  contains  the  Sea  of  Galilee,  we  see  at  a 
glance  that  it  is  simply  one  element  of  the  Jordan  valley  and 
Dead  Sea,  which  extends  due  north  and  south  for  a  distance  of 
sixty  hours.  This  is  the  Ghor,  or  Sunken  Valley  of  the  Arabs, 
extendingjrom  Hasbeya  to  the  ^Elanitic  Gulf  as  a  continuous 
cleft — the  deepest  one  that  is  known  to  us.  Its  many  varieties 
of  aspect,  including  those  found  in  the  Sinaitic  Peninsula,  do 

1  Seetzen,  i.a.l.  pp.  349,  350. 

2  Ali  Bey,  Trav.  ii.  p.  260  ;  and  Robinson,  Rib.  Research,  ii.  p.  403. 

3  Bove,  Recit.  l.c.  Bulletin ,  iii.  p.  388.  4  Russegger,  Reise,  iii.  p.  131. 

YOL.  IT.  Q 



not  permit  our  seeing  at  once  the  unity  which  characterizes  the 
long  length  of  the  Ghor,  or  recognising  the  volcanic  nature  of 
the  result  of  convulsions  which  took  place  doubtless  antecedent 
to  human  history.1  That  those  convulsions  took  place,  is  well 
authenticated  by  the  existence  of  large  masses  of  volcanic  rock 
which  have  broken  through  the  superimposed  crust.  The 
frequent  earthquakes  which  occur ;  the  form  of  the  basin  of 
Gennesaret,  which  Russegger  thinks  crater-shaped  (though 
certainly  incorrectly,  as  Wilson  has  conclusively  shown2)  ;  the 
hot  springs  on  the  border  of  the  lake ;  the  many  caves  scattered 
far  and  near ;  the  constitution  of  the  country  east  of  the  Jordan, 
in  evident  geological  connection  with  the  Ghor  ;  the  large 
deposits  of  naphtha  in  the  valley  of  Hasbeya ;  the  springs  of 
the  same  and  of  hot  water  in  the  neighbourhood  of,  and  even 
in,  the  Dead  Sea;  the  lofty  crystalline  masses  of  the  Sinaitic 
Peninsula,  and  the  porphyritic  dykes  which  are  found  near  the 
southern  extremity  of  this  great  cleft ;  all  confirm  the  theory, 
that  powerful  volcanic  forces  have  been  at  work  there. 

An  important  part  in  all  this  has  been  played,  unquestion¬ 
ably,  by  the  black  basaltic  rock,  which  increases  in  extent  as  we 
approach  Lake  Tiberias  from  the  north  and  west,  and  which 
appears  again  in  the  neighbourhood  of  Damascus,  on  the  east 
side  of  the  Jordan,  passes  down  through  the  Leja,  Jaulan, 
and  Hauran,  to  the  Sheriat  el  Mandhur  (Hieromax),  and 
back  acrain  to  the  Sea  of  Tiberias.  It  thus  forms  a  colossal 


basaltic  triangle,3  bearing  the  name  of  the  Basaltic  Trachonitis. 
The  Sheriat  el  Mandhur  breaks  through  it  from  east  to  west ; 
and  out  of  the  depth  of  the  cleft  thus  occasioned  issue  the 
boiling  springs  of  Qm  Keis  or  Gadara,4  which  are  similar  to 
those  found  in  the  neighbourhood  of  Tiberias.  Seetzen  thinks 
that  the  small  river  just  mentioned  forms  the  southern  boundary 
of  the  basaltic  region. 


In  passing  from  Acre,  first  towards  Mount  Tabor,  and  then 
to  Lake  Tiberias  by  way  of  liattin,  Russegger5  first  encoun¬ 
tered  volcanic  rocks  on  the  banks  of  the  Nalir  Mechatta,  or 

1  Russegger,  Reise ,  iii.  p.  1B4. 

2  Wilson,  Lands  of  the  Bible ,  ii.  p.  151.  . 

3  Iv.  v.  Rauraer,  Das  bstliche  Paldst.  in  Annal.  1830,  i.  pp.  554-561. 

4  Seetzen,  Mon.  Corresp.  xviii.  p.  353  ;  Gesenius’  Burckharclt,  i.  p.  424. 

6  Russegger,  Reise,  iii.  pp.  258-261. 



Kislion, — a  vast  basaltic  dyke,  which  has  forced  its  way  through 
the  limestone,  retaining  its  characteristic  black  colour,  blistered 
in  appearance,  and  exhibiting  zeolites  here  and  there.  A  second 
dyke  of  the  same  nature,  and  no  less  massive,  is  found  running 
from  north  to  south,  in  the  normal  direction  of  the  Ghor,  as 
one  leaves  the  plain  of  Esdraelon,  and  approaches  the  hills 
around  Nazareth.  The  hills  around  the  village,  however,  do 
not  display  traces  of  the  volcanic  stone ;  but  they,  in  common 
with  the  whole  Galilean  mountain  system,  are  composed  of  the 
same  limestone  which  is  found  in  the  neighbourhood  of  Jeru¬ 
salem.  But  north  of  Nazareth,  between  Kefr  Kana  and  the 
Sea  of  Tiberias,  there  is  a  reappearance  of  basalt  dykes,  on 
such  a  scale  of  greatness,1  as  to  cause  the  belief  that  the  con¬ 
vulsions  which  threw  them  to  the  surface  will  explain  the 
curious  contortions  which  the  jurassic  and  dolomitic  formations, 
met  with  all  the  way  to  the  Gulf  of  Acre,  exhibit.  The  graceful 
Tabor  exhibits  traces,  too,  of  having  undergone  the  pressure  of 
subterranean  forces,  which  have  largely  affected  its  appearance  ; 
and  these  are  all  the  more  apparent,  when  it  is  compared  with 
the  low  mountain  usually  known  as  Little  Hermon,  which 
stands  isolated  on  the  eastern  border  of  the  Plain  of  Esdraelon. 
Tabor  abounds  with  holes,  which,  according  to  Bussegger,  have 
generally  a  cave-like  appearance,  and  are  supposed  to  be  caused 
by  the  emission  of  suppressed  gases,  when  these  have  become 
so  powerful  as  to  force  their  way  to  the  surface.2 

In  the  fertile  rolling  upland  called  Ard  el  Hamma,  about  a 
thousand  feet3  above  the  level  of  the  sea,  and  at  the  eastern 
base  of  Tabor,  the  rock  is  covered  with  soil,  and  very  seldom  is 
visible  :  the  greater  part,  however,  is  strewn  with  fragments  of 
basalt4  and  other  kinds  of  rubble,  much  of  it  cinder-like,  and 
some  exhibiting  zeolites.  Near  Kurun  Hattin  (Mons  beatitu- 
dinis ),  and  along  the  southern  slope,  there  runs  from  wTest  to 
east  a  valley  whose  surface  is  tolerably  flat,  and  which  slopes 
gently  to  the  basin  of  Lake  Tiberias  :  in  it  are  found  two 
cisterns  and  the  ruins  of  a  khan.  The  main  road  from  Tabor 

1  Russegger,  Reise ,  iii.  p.  262. 

2  K.  v.  Raumer,  Dr.  tertiare  Kalkstein  bei  Paris  und  der  Kalkstein  des 
westl.  Palast.  in  Beitragen  1843,  p.  65. 

3  Russegger,  Reise ,  iii.  p.  130. 

4  Russegger,  Reise :  Das  Projil.  Tab.  vii.  2. 



to  Damascus  runs  through  it,1  leaving  the  city  of  Tiberias  at 
the  right.  At  the  northern  end  of  this  valley  basalt  appears, 
forming  an  immense  dvke  nearly  two  and  a  half  miles  broad.2 
This  runs  down  toward  Lake  Tiberias,  and  close  by  its  border 
it  towers  up  in  the  form  of  a  knoll,  the  top  of  which  is  eight 
hundred  feet  above  the  level  of  the  sea.  This  cannot  be  the 
result  of  any  mass  of  molten  matter  flowing  down,  but  rather 
the  result  of  subterranean  pressure,  causing  immense  superin¬ 
cumbent  masses  to  give  way,  and  to  allow  the  volcanic  rock 
below  to  jet  up  and  form  its  wedges  and  dykes,  which  still 
attest  the  terrible  throes  of  nature.  There  are  traces  of  these 
throughout  the  neighbourhood.  North  of  the  basalt,  near  the 
Hattin  mountain,  and  close  bv  the  Safed  hills,  Russeg;g;er  saw 
places  where  the  jurassic  rocks  have  cloven  down  to  the  level 
of  the  lake,  by  the  violence  of  volcanic  forces. 

Directly  below  the  mighty  basalt  knoll  just  alluded  to, 
extends  the  crater-shaped  basin  of  Lake  Tiberias,  surrounded 
by  high  mountains,  only  broken  by  the  cleft  through  which 
the  Jordan  takes  its  way.  The  whole  eastern  side  of  the  lake 
seemed  to  him  to  be  a  wall  of  limestone,  behind  which  lay  the 
plateau  of  Hauran.  No  professed  geologist  has  examined  the 
east  side  of  the  Sea  of  Galilee,  and  I  am  compelled  to  doubt 
whether  Russegwr’s  view  of  what  was  eigjit  or  nine  miles  at 
least  from  him,  can  be  accepted  as  reliable  evidence ;  for  it 
not  only  conflicts  with  the  general  statements  of  travellers  in 
Hauran,  that  basalt  is  found  very  largely  there,  but  it  will  be 
remembered  by  the  reader  that  Seetzen,3  at  the  time  of  his 
hasty  visit  to  the  blind  chief,  recorded  on  a  preceding  page, 
speaks  of  the  prevalence  of  a  dark-brown  basaltic  stone  on  his 

The  west  shore,  however,  was  thoroughly  examined  by 
Russegger,  and  was  found  to  belong  to  the  jurassic  formation, 
excepting  in  the  places  alluded  to,  where  basalt  had  been  inter¬ 
jected  in  such  vast  dykes  that  they  show'  how  general  the 
action  of  the  ancient  volcanic  forces  must  have  been.  I  cannot 
omit  mentioning  that  in  one  of  the  valleys,  running  in  a  north- 
north-westerly  direction  from  Lake  Tiberias  to  a  point  on  the 

1  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  p.  394. 

2  Wilson,  Lands  of  the  Bible,  ii.  p.  112. 

3  Seetzen,  Mon.  Corresp.  xviii.  p.  353. 



south-west  side  of  Safed,  there  is  a  depression  three  or  four 
hundred  feet  in  length  and  a  hundred  feet  in  breadth,  with 
steep  lava  sides  running  down  to  a  depth  of  forty  feet.  A 
little  pool  fills  the  bottom  of  it.  It  is  supposed  to  be  the  crater 
of  a  now  extinct  volcano,1  now  known  as  Birket  el  Jish.  It  has 
been  thought  that  at  the  time  of  the  violent  convulsions  which 
once  shook  this  region,  this  volcano  may  have  been  the  centre. 

The  city  of  Tiberias,  which  is  close  by  the  lake,2  stands 
upon  the  lower  extremity  of  a  great  basaltic  dyke,  which, 
although  by  no  means  uniform  in  its  appearance  throughout  its 
course,  yet  seems  to  have  no  other  lack  of  uniformity  than 
would  be  occasioned  by  the  amount  of  resistance  which  it 
encountered  at  the  time  of  its  upheaval,  and  the  varied  rates  of 
cooling  which  it  experienced. 

Yon  Schubert3  found  the  shore  of  the  lake  composed  of 
limestone  of  several  formations — a  large  part  of  it  chalk,  how¬ 
ever — and  interspersed  with  the  solid  masses  of  basalt  mentioned 
by  Russegger  and  others.  Out  of  this  black  basalt  the  walls 
of  Tiberias  are  built,  many  of  the  houses,  the  most  ancient 
structures  in  Tell  Hum,  and,  in  short,  the  larger  part  of  the 
architectural  remains  which  are  met  on  the  shores  of  the  lake. 

At  the  surface  the  basalt  has  usually  crumbled  into  shape¬ 
less  blocks,  covered  with  a  white,  earthy,  decomposed  substance, 
resembling  phonolithic  stone.  Where  the  shape  of  the  original 
masses  has  been  wholly  lost  owing  to  exposure,  there  results  a 
rich  dark  earth  which  is  extremely  fertile.  The  hot  salt  and 
sulphur  springs  which  gush  up  in  those  regions,  and  the 
frequent  earthquakes  which  abound  in  the  neighbourhood  of 
the  lake,  attest  the  volcanic  nature  of  the  whole  region.  From 
a  very  early  antiquity  the  hot  springs  of  Tiberias  have  attracted 
attention  to  themselves.  They  lie  south  of  the  city,  on  the 
southern  edge  of  the  great  basaltic  dyke,4  but  they  spring  not 
from  the  basalt  itself,  but  from  the  jurassic  limestone  and 
dolomite.  This  is  yellowish-white  in  colour,  and  displays  the 
shells  clearly  when  it  is  quarried.  Its  strata  extend  from 
north-west  to  south-east,  with  an  inclination  of  15°  towards  the 

1  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  pp.  423,  424. 

2  Russegger,  Reise ,  iii.  p.  260. 

3  Yon  Schubert,  Reise,  iii.  p.  237. 

4  Russegger,  Reise ,  iii.  p.  261. 



south-west.  In  the  gorges  which  sink  to  the  level  of  the 
lake,  basalt  is  everywhere  found,  unquestionably  forming  side 
branches  of  the  main  dyke,  and  creating  a  network  of  great 
complexity  and  extent. 

5.  The  Hot  Salt  Springs  of  Tiberias. 

These  springs,  which  have  been  noticed  from  a  very  early 
period,  lie  about  a  mile  south  of  the  city.  Josephus  often 
mentions  them  under  the  names  of  Emmaus  and  Ammaus, 
probably  a  Greek  form  of  the  Hebrew  Hammath ,  i.e.  warm 
baths  :  the  Arabic  word  Ilammam ,  by  which  they  are  now 
generally  known,  is  a  corruption  of  the  Hebrew.  Seetzen 
thinks1  that  if  these  springs  were  in  Europe,  they  would  form 
one  of  the  most  attractive  bathing-places  in  the  world.  Burck- 
hardt  found  a  bathing-house  erected  over  the  one  nearest  to 
the  city,  and  furnished  with  two  apartments.  The  spring 
which  is  used  is  the  largest  of  the  four  hot  ones,  and  the  supply 
of  water  is  great  enough  even  to  turn  the  wheels  of  mills  !2 
The  three  other  hot  springs,  or  really  four,  if  one  counts  two 
smaller  ones  lying  side  by  side,  are  two  hundred  steps  farther 
south ;  and  the  most  southern  one,  which  is  so  shallow  that 
the  hand  can  scarcely  be  dipped  into  it,  is  the  hottest  of  all. 
These  baths  are  much  resorted  to  by  people  afflicted  with 
rheumatism,  scurvy,  and  leprosy,  from  many  parts  of  Palestine 
and  Syria. 

Yon  Schubert  found3  the  hot  springs  to  have  a  temperature 
of  48°  Reaum.,  and  to  contain  salt  and  a  solution  of  iron.  Tie 
compares  the  waters  with  those  of  Carlsbad  :  at  the  bottom  he 
observed  sulphur  and  lime  globules,  coloured  red  with  the  oxide 
of  iron.  Not  merely  the  warmth  of  the  springs  themselves 
seemed  to  be  favourable  to  the  persons  afflicted  with  palsy, 
who  use  their  waters,  but  the  warmth  of  the  nights  there 
also  seems  beneficial.  There  prevails  around  Tiberias  a  true 
hothouse  climate,  and  the  palm  flourishes  there  as  well  as  in 
Akaba  and  Alexandria.  On  the  north  side  of  the  city  of 
Tiberias  also,  at  Szermadin,  there  is  a  warm  brook  of  about 
twenty  degrees  Reaumur,4  which  rushes  forth  from  a  cavernous 
outlet  in  the  rock,  and  whose  waters  taste  of  salt  and  iron. 

1  Seetzen,  Mon.  Corresp.  xviii.  p.  349.  2  Burckhardt,  Trav.  p.  329. 

3  Von  Schubert,  Iieise ,  iii.  p.  239.  4  Ibid.  p.  245. 



Its  banks  are  abundantly  overshadowed  with  the  beautiful 
evergreen  oleander  with  its  rose-like  blossoms,  a  true  delight  to 
the  eyes,  recalling  the  expression  in  Ps.  i.  3,  u  A  tree  planted 
by  the  rivers  of  water,  that  bringeth  forth  his  fruit  in  his 
season.”  Still  farther  north  there  are  found  copious  warm 
springs  issuing1  from  the  basalt  rocks,  and  forming  brooks  of 
considerable  size,  that  dash  down  the  steep  declivity  leading  to 
the  sea.  The  great  number  of  these  springs,  and  the  abundant 
supplies  of  w^ater  which  issue  from  them  in  a  region  very 
scantily  supplied  with  springs  of  fresh  water,2  hint  very  strongly 
at  volcanic  activities  once  at  work  there,  to  which  they  probably 
owe  their  existence. 

The  Hammam  at  Tiberias  are  the  best  known  of  all  on  the 
shores  of  the  lake,  although  the  hot  springs  at  Om  Keis,  in  the 
neighbourhood  of  Gadara,  which  were  visited  by  Barckhardt 
and  Buckingham,  are  no  less  remarkable  in  respect  to  size. 
According  to  Russegger’s  observations,  the  springs  south  of  the 
city  of  Tiberias  issue  from  ground  which  has  been  formed  by 
a  combination  of  basalt  and  limestone  rubble;  and  although 
forming  several  little  rivulets  of  water,  yet  the  various  indica¬ 
tions  made  it  certain  to  his  mind  that  one  parent  supply  is  the 
source  of  all.  About  the  year  1833, 3  Ibrahim  Pasha  built  an 
elegant  bath-house,  furnished  with  a  marble  basin,  and  adorned 
in  the  luxuriant  manner  of  European  establishments  of  the 
same  kind.  At  that  time  the  wTater  of  the  chief  spring  was 
conducted  to  this  bath-house  by  an  artificial  canal  three 
hundred  paces  long.  As  the  water  bursts  forth  to  a  height  of 
two  or  three  feet,  Russegger  thought  it  probable  that  the  real 
source  might  be  in  the  mountains  lying  directly  behind  the 
baths.  In  the  course  of  time  there  have  been  probably  many 
changes  in  the  number  and  size  of  the  springs :  these  it  is 
impossible  to  ascertain.  I  cannot  forbear,  however,  alluding 
to  the  statement  of  Isthakri4  (middle  of  the  tenth  century),  that 
the  springs  issue  from  the  ground  at  the  distance  of  two  para- 
sangs  from  the  city,  and  that  the  water  was  so  hot  that  a  hide 
thrown  into  it  would  very  soon  lose  its  hair.  He  remarks, 
moreover,  that  for  culinary  purposes  the  water  can  only  be 

1  Schubert,  Reise ,  iii.  p.  251.  2  Burckhardt,  Trav.  p.  332. 

3  Wilson,  Lands  of  the  Bible ,  ii.  p.  127  ;  Tristram,  p.  428. 

4  Isthakri,  Buck  der  Lander ,  pp.  35,  36  ;  Edrisi,  Jaubert?s  ed.  i.  p.  347. 



used  by  mixing  with  that  from  common  springs :  the  people  of 
Tiberias  usually  take  theirs  from  the  lake.  In  the  twelfth 
century  the  springs  appear  to  have  yielded  more  profusely  than 
they  have  since.  Edrisi  gives  the  names  of  four  which  were 
used  as  baths  ;  he  says,  besides,  that  there  were  other  ones 
farther  south  which  were  much  resorted  to  bv  the  sick. 

The  water  of  the  main  spring  Russegger  found  clear,  with 
a  strong  salt  taste,  and  a  very  perceptible  smell  of  sulphuric 
acid.  The  temperature  he  found  to  be  46°  Reaum.  when  that 
of  the  air  was  11  :  it  was  scalding  hot,  and  could  be  used  for 

bathing  only  after  cooling.  An  analysis  of  the  water  gave  him 
as  bases,  nitre,  talc,  lime,  and  potash:  as  acids,  free  sulphurous, 
hydrochloric,  and  sulphuric.  Thick  deposits  he  did  not  perceive, 
onlv  a  slight  sediment :  Robinson  discovered  red  and  green 
discoloration  of  the  glass  in  which  he  allowed  it  to  stand  and 
settle.  Yon  Schubert  found  the  heat  to  be  48°;  Robinson,  who 
was  there  only  a  short  time  thereafter,  records  that  it  ranged 
from  48°  to  49J°,  a  trifling  amount  higher  than  it  was  in  the 
winter  when  Russegger  examined  the  temperature.  At  the 
time  of  the  great  earthquake  of  1837,  it  was  found  that  not 
only  was  the  heat  of  the  water  much  increased,  but  the  amount 
of  water  was  very  much  enlarged, — a  fact  which  seemed  to  hint 
not  at  all  obscurely  at  a  connection  between  the  springs  and  the 
volcanic  activities  which  were  displayed  then  on  so  extensive  a 
scale.  Lieut.  Molyneux,1  who  examined  the  springs  in  Aug. 
1847,  found  the  temperature  to  be  130°  Fahr.,2  or  about  44°  R. 
Earlier  measurements  of  the  thermal  state  of  the  springs  are 
not  known  to  have  been  made. 

6.  The  Earthquake  of  1837. 

The  British  consul  at  Beirut,  Mr  Moore,  states,3  in  his  report 
to  the  Royal  Geographical  Society  regarding  the  earthquake 
which  was  felt  in  1837  in  Beirut,  Cyprus,  Damascus,  and  the 
country  to  the  south,  extending  as  far  as  Jerusalem,4  that  the 

1  Molyneux,  Exped.  in  Jour,  of  Boy.  Geog.  Soc.  of  London ,  xviii.  p.  107. 

2  Lieut.  Lynch,  of  the  American  expedition,  found  the  heat  of  the 
springs  in  April  1848  to  he  143°  Fahr. — Ed. 

3  Moore,  in  Jour .  of  the  Roy.  Geog.  Soc.  vii.  p.  101. 

4  Thomson,  Journal  of  a  Visit  to  Safet  and  Tiberias ,  Jan.  1837,  in 
Missionary  Herald ,  vol.  xxxiii.  pp.  433-442. 


city  of  Tiberias  suffered  much  more  from  the  upheaval  than 
did  the  region  in  which  the  hot  springs  are  found :  the  subter¬ 
ranean  channels  which  convey  the  water  to  the  surface  seemed 
to  act  as  the  natural  conductors  of  the  pent-up  gases,  and  pre¬ 
vent  the  effects  of  their  explosion.  Though  Tiberias  did  not 
suffer  so  seriously  as  Safed,  yet  it  was  left  little  better  than  a 
heap  of  ruins,  and  a  thousand  people — a  third  of  the  inhabitants 
— perished.  For  weeks  after  the  chief  convulsion,  tremblings 
of  the  ground  were  experienced.  The  heat  of  the  warm  springs 
increased  to  such  an  extent  at  the  time,  that  the  thermometers 
which  could  be  obtained  were  inadequate  to  record  it ;  and  not 
only  was  the  temperature  higher,  but  the  supply  of  water  poured 
forth  was  greater  than  it  had  been  for  years  before.  While  the 
rivers  in  other  parts  of  Palestine  and  Syria — that  at  Beirut,  for 
instance — forsook  their  beds,  and  left  them  dry  for  hours,  the 
supply  poured  into  the  Sea  of  Tiberias  from  the  hot  springs 
was  so  largely  increased,  that,  according  to  some  accounts,1 
the  lake  wras  sensibly  raised  above  its  ordinary  level.  There 
were  rumours2  also  that  flames  were  seen  breaking  out  in 
various  places  in  Hauran  and  Jolan.  These,  however,  lack 

A  statement  made  to  Reland  by  persons  who  had  returned 
to  Europe  from  Palestine,  shows  that  just  an  opposite  effect 
has  been  produced  upon  the  springs  by  previous  earthquakes, 
and  that  tlie  Tiberias  springs  have  been  closed  for  a  consider¬ 
able  length  of  time.  About  1710  they  yielded  no  water  for  at 
least  three  years :  it  may  have  been  a  longer  time,  for  there  is 
no  evidence  to  show  at  what  period  they  began  to  flow  again. 

The  extent  of  territory  affected  by  the  great  earthquake  of 
1837  extended  from  north  to  south,  and  was  about  five  hundred 
miles  in  length,  and  about  ninety  in  breadth.  There  is  no 
authentic  information  received  regarding  its  manifestation  on 
the  east  side  of  the  Jordan. 

7.  Water,  Wind ,  Climate,  and  Vegetation. 

Regarding  the  lake  itself,  full  accounts  are  yet  wanting ; 
yet  from  what  can  be  learned,  in  addition  to  the  measurements 
already  referred  to,  it  becomes  shallow  towards  the  southern 

1  Caiman,  in  Kitto,  Phys.  Hist,  of  Pal.  p.  xcii. 

2  Wilson,  Lands  of  the  Bible ,  vol.  ii.  p.  129. 



extremity.  Molyneux  gives  the  depth  near  the  outlet  as 
eighty-four  feet :  at  the  south-east  corner,  near  Semak,  Burck- 
liardt1  was  able  by  swimming  to  form  some  conjecture  as  to  the 
depth;  at  any  rate,  he  encountered  none  of  the  reeds  and 
sedge  which  make  really  shallow  places.2  The  water  of  the 
lake  is  sweet,  and  supplies  a  great  part  of  the  city  with  that 
which  is  needed  for  culinary  purposes,  there  being  no  fresh¬ 
water  springs  in  the  neighbourhood.  Both  Burckhardt  and 
von  Schubert3  found  fresh-water  snails  on  the  shore,  as  well 
as  the  other  kinds  of  shell-fish  which  they  met  on  the  lower 
Jordan.  The  former  traveller  was  unable  to  find  any  fishes 
at  the  southern  end  of  the  lake,  where  once  the  town  of 
Tarichsea4  lay,  which  derived  its  name  from  the  curing  of  fish 
there  ;  but  at  the  northern  end  he  found  an  abundance,  parti¬ 
cularly  of  carps  (binni),  and  a  kind  of  flat  fish  (mesht),  a  foot 
Ion  o’  and  five  inches  broad.  At  the  time  of  his  visit  the  right  of 

o  o 

fishing  in  the  lake  was  hired  out  by  the  people  of  Tiberias  for 
seven  hundred  piastres,  but  the  boat5  which  the  fishermen  had 
used  was  then  unfit  for  use.  Otto  von  Richter6  saw  men  stand¬ 
ing  up  to  their  waists  in  water,  and  catching  fish  in  hand-nets; 
they  seemed  to  him  to  be  no  less  successful  in  their  labour  than 
the  fishermen  of  a  remote  antiquity  were.  Robinson  praises 
the  fine-flavoured  fish  of  the  lake,  the  silurus,  mugil,  and  spams 
galilseus  of  Hasselquist.  Von  Schubert  confirms  the  statement 
of  Josephus,  that  in  the  Sea  of  Tiberias  are  found  the  same 
kinds  of  fish  which  are  met  in  the  Egyptian  Lacus  Mareotis 
near  Alexandria,  and  hence  calls  the  Sea  of  Galilee  the  source 
of  the  Nile.  Wilson  declares  that  the  fish  of  Lake  Tiberias 
are  excellent  ;  he  mentions  the  cyprinus  bennii,  the  mesht 
(which  he  thinks  was  the  sparus  galilseus  of  Hasselquist),  the 
mormyrus,  which,  according  to  Sir  Gardiner  Wilkinson,7  is  a 
native  of  Egypt,  and  the  oxyrinchus  of  the  ancients.  Wilson 
also  speaks  of  seeing  water-fowls  upon  the  lake,  among  them 

1  Burckhardt,  Trav.  p.  276.  2  Ibid.  p.  332. 

3  Yon  Schubert,  Peise,  iii.  p.  238 ;  Tristram,  pp.  428,  437. 

4  Seetzen,  Mon.  Corresp.  xviii.  p.  350. 

5  Burckhardt,  Gesenius’  ed.  i.  p.  433,  ii.  p.  576. 

6  Otto  von  Richter,  Wallfahrten ,  p.  60. 

7  Wilkinson,  Manners  of  the  Anc.  Egypt,  vol.  iii.  p.  58. 


With  regard  to  the  statement  of  Clarke  and  others,1  that 
the  waters  of  the  Jordan  pass  through  the  sea  from  one  end  to 
the  other  without  mingling  with  those  of  the  lake,  Robinson 
and  other  modern  travellers  have  been  able  to  ascertain  nothing 
confirmatory  :  it  is  probably  an  error  occasioned  in  great  part 
by  an  expression  of  Josephus,  and  strengthened  by  Willibold, 
as  well  as  by  the  learned  Pausanias.  Some  of  the  Jewish 
rabbis,  too — Jichus  ha  Abot,  for  instance — have  claimed  to  be 
able  to  trace  the  course  of  the  river  through  the  lake ;  and  even 
Irby  and  Mangles  say2  that  at  certain  places  the  surface  of  the 
water  is  seen  to  be  disturbed  by  the  onward  motion  of  the  river. 
It  may  be  that  this  is  a  matter  which  is  more  or  less  affected  by 
changes  in  the  amount  of  water,  and  by  other  varying  circum¬ 
stances,  and  cannot  be  reduced  to  any  general  statement. 

Burckhardt  states3  that  the  level  of  Lake  Tiberias  is  some¬ 
times  raised  three  or  four  feet  during  the  rainy  season, — a 
phenomenon  perfectly  intelligible  in  view  of  the  many  brooks 
which  flow  into  it.  Turner  goes  so  far  as  to  assert,  that  at  the 
time  of  the  heavy  rains  many  houses  are  in  part  under  water. 
The  confined  inland  situation  of  the  lake  exposes  it  to  the  most 
violent  winds  and  storms  (Matt.  viii.  23;  John  vi.  18);  and 
this  has  caused  a  very  boisterous  character  to  be  ascribed  to  it. 
Russegger4  witnessed  a  tempest  sweep  over  the  sea  about  the 
last  of  December,  dashing  waves  against  the  shore  with  great 
violence ;  and  yet  on  the  land  scarcely  a  breath  of  wind  was  to 
be  felt.  Five  hundred  feet  higher,  on  the  western  bank,  a  very 
severe  cold  wind  was  experienced,  coming  from  the  distant 
Hauran  plateau,  which  was  then  covered  with  snow.  Russegger 
suspected  that  the  wind  struck  the  surface  of  the  lake  at  such 
an  angle  as  to  be  reflected  again  and  glance  off,  striking  the 
shore  high  up  the  slope  of  the  basin,  and  literally  leaving  the 
city  of  Tiberias  beneath  the  motion  of  the  atmospheric  current. 
A  more  protracted  stay  than  travellers  usually  make  would 
throw  much  light  upon  this  phenomenon. 

Turner,5  while  bathing  near  the  north  gate  of  Tiberias, 
discovered  that  in  one  place  the  water  rose  to  the  height  of  86° 
Fahr.  (24°  R.)  :  elsewhere  the  temperature  was  much  cooler. 

1  Russegger,  Reise ,  iii.  p.  132.  2  Irby  and  Mangles,  Trciv.  p.  295. 

8  Burckhardt,  Trav.  p.  332 ;  W.  Turner,  Journal ,  ii.  p.  142. 

4  Russegger,  Reise,  iii.  p.  13G.  6  Turner,  Journ.  ii.  pp.  141,  144. 



The  inference  was  natural,  that  beneath  the  spot  where  he  was 
swimming  there  are  powerful  hot  springs.  A  burning  sirocco 
was  blowing  from  the  south  at  the  same  time, — a  wind  which 
in  the  nights  often  causes  great  storms  upon  the  lake.  In  the 
month  of  August,  Lieut.  Molyneux  experienced  at  noon  a  heat 
of  103°  Fahr.  in  the  shade.  During  the  summer  these  south 
winds  are  very  common  :  they  parch  all  the  vegetation,  and 
cause  it  to  ignite  at  the  touch  of  a  single  spark.  When  this 
occurs,  the  wind,  overdriving  the  flames  far  and  wide,  effects 
a  great  deal  of  damage.  Burckhardt  tells  us1  that  it  is  the 
custom  of  the  land,  if  such  a  conflagration  result  from  the  fall¬ 
ing  of  a  single  spark  from  a  tobacco-pipe,  to  put  the  smoker  to 
instant  death.  Gesenius2  calls  attention  to  the  fine  commen¬ 
tary  these  accidental  burnings  give  to  some  passages  ;  in  Isa. 
v.  24,  for  example,  u  Therefore,  as  the  fire  devoureth  the 
stubble,  and  the  flame  consumeth  the  chaff,”  etc.  In  the 
spring-time  there  is  nothing  of  this  arid  aspect  to  be  seen,  and 
the  whole  district  is  one  mass  of  leaves  and  blossoms. 

The  hot  south  winds,  and  the  terraces  which  surround  the 
lake,  must  have  a  great  influence  upon  the  whole  course  of 
vegetation,  and  must  occasion  the  marked  contrasts  which  are 
exhibited  there  in  the  various  seasons.  The  west  winds  which 
prevail  in  Syria  during  the  summer3  are  not  able  to  strike  the 
deep-lying  west  coast  of  Lake  Tiberias :  the  situation  of  the 
city  is  therefore  far  from  healthy,  and  fevers  abound.  The 
high  plateau  region  in  the  neighbourhood,  which  is  covered 
with  snow  in  the  winter,  as  well  as  the  eternally  snow-capped 
Lebanon  not  far  away,  cannot  exert  in  their  turn  a  less  marked 
influence  upon  the  vegetation  of  the  shores  of  the  lake  than 
the  hot  south  wind  does.  Yon  Schubert  remarks4  that  the  flora 
of  the  highest  part  of  the  basin  around  the  lake  is  precisely 
that  of  Nazareth  and  the  base  of  the  Carmel  range,  while 
those  which  grow  at  the  lowest  part  are  the  same  as  those  which 
are  found  at  Jericho.  Burckhardt  thought  the  heat  at  Tiberias 
equal  to  that  experienced  at  the  Dead  Sea.  This  explains  the 
ancient  praises  of  the  palms  and  the  balsam  shrubs  which  used 

1  Burckhardt,  Trciv.  p.  331. 

2  Gesenius,  Notes  to  Burckhardt,  ii.  p.  1056. 

8  Burckhardt,  Trciv.  p.  320. 

4  Yon  Schubert,  lleise,  iii.  p.  232. 



to  be  found  in  both  localities  ;  but  although  palms  are  still 
found  growing  in  the  neighbourhood  of  Tiberias,1  von  Schubert 
was  unable  to  discover  any  trace  of  the  balsam.  Strabo’s 
allusion  2  to  /SaXcrafjLov ,  on  the  shores  of  Gennesaret,  seems  to 
arise  from  a  hasty  confounding  of  the  place  with  Jericho. 
Still  it  is  evident,  as  Cotovicus  has  shown,3  that  many  plants 
which  once  throve  on  the  shores  of  the  lake  are  found  there  no 
longer.  The  narrow  plains  along  the  shore,  remarks  Burck- 
hardt,  would  be  able  to  produce  every  kind  of  tropical  fruit ; 
yet  the  inhabitants  of  Tiberias  content  themselves  with  raising 
wheat,  barley,  dhurra,  tobacco,  melons,  grapes,  and  some  kinds 
of  garden  vegetables.  The  melons4  are  of  the  finest  quality, 
and  are  in  much  demand  in  Acre  and  in  Damascus,  being  sup¬ 
plied  a  month  before  those  raised  in  the  vicinity  of  those  places 
come  into  the  market. 

The  winters  in  Tiberias  must  be  somewhat  more  severe 
than  in  Jericho,  for  snow  is  sometimes,  though  very  rarely, 
met  there :  at  the  time  of  Robinson’s  visit,  the  wheat  harvest 
was  ended  on  the  14th  of  May  at  the  latter  place,  while  at 
Tiberias  the  last  was  not  housed  before  the  19th  of  June. 
Sesam,  cotton,  and  indigo  are  to  a  certain  extent  raised5  upon 
the  borders  of  the  lake. 



I.  The  Galilean  or  west  and  north-west  side  of  the  Lake. 

The  present  desolate  aspect  of  the  country  around  the  Sea 
of  Tiberias  is  in  the  most  marked  contrast  with  the  great  pro¬ 
sperity  which  was  exhibited  there  at  a  former  day,  when  the 
cities  which  only  exist  at  present  as  shattered  and  crumbling 
ruins  were  thronged  with  a  busy  population.  Only  the  western 
shore  of  the  lake  is  trodden  by  civilised  men  to-day,  and  the 

1  Burckhardt,  Trav.  p.  323  ;  von  Scliubert,  Reise,  iii.  p.  235. 

2  Gesenius,  Notes  to  Burckhardt,  Pt.  ii.  Note  to  p.  105. 

3  Cotovicus,  Itinerar.  ed.  Antw.  1619,  p.  358. 

4  Burckhardt,  Trav.  p.  322.  See  Robinson,  Bib .  Research,  ii.  p.  388. 

6  Abulfedae  Tabul.  Syr.  ed.  Koehler,  p.  35. 



only  two  places  even  there  which  are  at  all  important  are  Safed 
and  Tiberias.  The  wild  tracts  of  Jolan  or  Gaulonitis,  east  of 
the  lake,  and  the  savage  land  of  the  Gadarenes  north  of  the 
Sheriat  el  Mandhur,  with  the  ancient  cities  of  Gadara,  Hippos, 
and  Gamala,  whose  ruins  may  be  seen  on  the  summits  of  the 
distant  hill-tops,  have  never  been  visited  by  any  Europeans 
with  the  exception  of  Seetzen  and  Burckhardt,  and  even 
they  were  able  to  catch  only  stolen  glimpses  of  the  unsub¬ 
dued  and  inhospitable  region.  No  one  has  ever  been  able  to 
pass  around  the  lake,  as  Seetzen  wished  to  do ;  and  all  we 
know  of  the  population  there  is  gathered  from  the  few  obser¬ 
vations  of  Seetzen  and  Burckhardt,  taken  under  exceedingly 
unfavourable  circumstances. 

On  the  west  coast  of  the  lake  and  in  the  adjacent  valleys 
there  are  several  walls,  springs  walled  up,  caves,  graves,  and 
other  tokens  of  former  habitation :  these  are  in  many  instances 
surrounded  by  fortresses,  some  of  which  appear  to  date  back 
to  a  very  remote  period,  others  not  further  back  than  the  time 
of  the  Saracens.  These  have  never,  however,  been  carefully 
studied :  we  only  know  them  from  the  casual  allusions  to  them 
by  hasty  travellers. 

The  western  coast  was  once  inhabited  by  the  Galilean 
mountaineers,  from  whom  many  of  the  apostles  were  selected 
(Acts  i.  11,  ii.  7), — an  active,  remarkable  people,  despised  by 
the  Jews,  but  honoured  by  the  Saviour,  and  made  the  medium 
of  diffusing  the  gospel  among  the  Jews  as  well  as  the  Gentiles. 
Josephus,  the  rigid  Pharisee,  praises  the  Galileans  on  the  score  of 
their  extraordinary  industry,  their  agricultural  skill,  their  thrift 
in  business,  and  the  valour  which  they  always  displayed.  The 
sea-coast  was  strewn  with  cities  and  villages,  and  the  population 
must  have  been  an  exceedingly  dense  one,  else  Josephus  would 
not  have  been  able  to  say  that  it  would  have  been  an  easy  thing 
for  him  to  raise  up  an  army  of  a  hundred  thousand  volunteers 
for  the  defence  of  Galilee  against  the  Romans.  Some  of  their 
towns  contained  15,000  inhabitants  each.  Not  the  tenth  part 
of  this  number  could  be  called  together  at  the  present  day. 
The  east  side  of  the  lake,  on  the  other  hand,  seems  always  to 
have  been  inhabited  by  restless,  unsettled  tribes,  unable,  as 
Josephus  says,  to  live  in  peace :  their  fixed  abodes  were  upon 
the  tops  of  hills,  and  some  of  their  ruins  may  be  seen  at  the 



present  time, — as,  for  instance,  those  of  Gamala,  Hippos,  and 

Although,  in  comparatively  modern  times,  Tiberias  has 
become  the  chief  place  in  Galilee,  in  Josephus’  day  Sephoris 
was  the  most  important  place ;  and  the  mountain  district  known 
by  the  name  of  Galilee  seems  to  have  been  more  inland  than 
the  tracts  belonging  to  Naphtali  and  Zebulon,  extending  from 
the  springs  of  the  Jordan  to  the  outlet  of  the  Sea  of  Chinnereth. 
This  district  only  subsequently  became  a  part  of  Galilee. 

A  proof  of  this  Gesenius1  finds  in  the  primitive  application 
of  the  name  G  alilee  to  a  region  very  unimportant  in  size  in  com¬ 
parison  with  that  which  the  province  of  Galilee  subsequently 
became :  see  the  allusion  to  it  in  the  times  of  Solomon  and 
Hiram,  in  1  Kings  ix.  11  and  2  Kings  xv.  29,  where  it  can  only 
mean  a  limited  tract  of  Naphtali.  This  is  yet  more  plainly  seen 
in  Josh.  xx.  7,  “Kedesh  in  Galilee,  in  Mount  Naphtali and  this 
expression,  Kedesh  in  Galilee,  is  one  of  very  frequent  occur¬ 
rence  (Josh.  xxi.  32;  1  Chron.  vi.  76).  Kosenmuller’s  claim,2 
that  the  words  “in  Galilee”  are  annexed  merely  to  distinguish 
it  from  another  Kedesh,  seems  superfluous,  since  the  expression 
“  in  Naphtali”  would  have  been  sufficient  to  distinguish  it  from 
the  Kedesh  in  Judah  and  that  in  Issachar.  It  may  be  set  down 
as  tolerably  certain,  that  the  Kedesh  whose  position  we  have 
already  fixed  on  the  north-west  side  of  the  waters  of  Merom, 
was  a  central  spot  in  the  ancient  province  of  Galilee,  at  a  period 
when  the  shores  of  the  subsequent  Sea  of  Galilee  could  not 
strictly  bear  that  name.  The  word  has  been  supposed  to  be 
derived  from  the  Hebrew  Galii  or  Galilali,  which  originally 
signifies  a  circle,  and  which  could  naturally  be  applied  to  a 
region  whose  proportions  were  continually  expanding.  And 
here  we  find  the  first  clue  to  explain  the  scorn  which  was 
universally  displayed  toward  Galileans,  and  which  appears  in 
the  New  Testament  as  exercising  a  decided  influence  upon  the 
Israelites  in  their  relations  to  the  Teacher  of  Nazareth  (Matt, 
xxvi.  69 ;  Luke  xxiii.  6) ;  the  scorn  to  which  Isaiah  alludes  as 
to  be  taken  away  when  Galilee  should  attain  her  promised  glory 
(Isa.  ix.  1,  2),  “Nevertheless,  the  dimness  shall  not  be  such  as 
was  in  her  vexation,  when  at  the  first  He  lightly  afflicted  the 

1  Gesenius,  Commentcir  zu  Isaias ,  i.  p.  350  et  seq. 

2  Rosenmiiller,  Bibl.  Alterthk.  ii.  p.  42. 



land  of  Zebulon,  and  tlie  land  of  Naphtali,  and  afterward  did 
more  grievously  afflict  her  by  the  way  of  the  sea,  beyond 
[this  side  of:  Luther’s  Germ,  trails.]  Jordan,  in  Galilee  of  the 
nations.  The  people  that  walked  in  darkness  have  seen  a  great 
light ;  they  that  dwell  in  the  land  of  the  shadow  of  death,  upon 
them  hath  the  light  shined.”  The  ignominy  which  rested  upon 
Galilee  was  occasioned  by  the  fact  that,  in  spite  of  the  bravery 
of  the  people  of  Naphtali  and  Zebulon,  they  had,  from  the  very 
time  when  their  territory  was  apportioned  to  them,  been  willing 
to  receive  the  Gentiles  or  heathen  among  themselves.  They 
remained  in  closer  alliance  with  their  idolatrous  neighbours 
than  any  of  the  other  tribes.  Of  Zebulon  the  prophecy  had 
been  spoken,  “He  shall  dwell  at  the  haven  of  the  sea;  and  he 
shall  be  for  a  haven  of  ships  ;  and  his  borders  shall  be  unto 
Sidon.”  This  implied  industrial  and  commercial  occupations 
which  were  foreign  to  the  genius  of  the  Hebrew  policy,  and  led 
first  to  the  transfer  of  twenty  Galilean  cities  by  Solomon  to 
Hiram  king  of  Tyre  (1  Kings  ix.  11);  and  subsequently  to 
idolatry  in  Dan,  at  the  head  waters  of  the  Jordan,  on  Hermon, 
and  in  other  parts  of  the  mountain  land.  The  marriage  of 
the  Israelites  with  the  daughters  of  the  heathen  followed  as  a 
matter  of  course;  and  this  unrighteous  connection,  together  with 
the  idolatrous  worship,  was  the  occasion  of  the  scorn  expressed 
by  Isaiah,  as  well  as  by  Matt.  iv.  15,  in  those  words,  u  Galilee 
of  the  Gentiles,”  which  had  become  current.  The  ill  repute 
in  which  the  Galileans  stood  may  have  been  increased  by  the 
misfortunes  endured  at  the  hands  of  Benhadad  and  Tiglath- 
Pileser,  as  well  as  by  the  coarse  Syrian  dialect,  and  the  strong 
guttural1  accent  of  the  mountaineers,  and  many  other  things 
which  throw  light  upon  the  question  put  by  Nathanael  to  Jesus, 
“  Can  any  good  thing  come  out  of  Nazareth?”  (John  i.  46, 
vii.  52.) 

1.  The  City  of  Tiberias ,  the  Tabaria  of  the  present  time.2 

It  was  only  in  the  time  of  Herod  I.  that  Roman  luxury  was 
introduced  into  that  part  of  northern  Palestine  which  extends 
from  the  Sea  of  Tiberias,  the  Banias  spring  of  the  Jordan. 

1  Winer,  Bib.  Realw.  i.  p.  388. 

2  H.  Reland,  Pal.  pp.  1036-1042  ;  Rosenmiiller,  Bib.  Alterthk.  ii.  p.  74 ; 
v.  Raumcr,  Paldst.  p.  138. 



Herod  n.,  generally  known  as  Antipas,  the  builder  of  Seplioris 
and  Betharamphtha  Julias,  and  the  brother  of  Philip,  to  whose 
munificence  Caesarea  Philippi  and  Bethsaida  Julias  owed  their 
erection,  was  the  founder  of  the  city  of  Tiberias,  whose  name 
wTas  derived  from  the  well-known  Pom  an  emperor  and  patron 
of  Herod.  He  preferred  the  sea-side  to  any  other  place  of 
residence,  and  surrounded  the  palace  which  he  built  there  with 
dwellings  for  his  court,  with  amphitheatres,  bath-houses,  and 
temples.  Josephus  tells  us,  that  in  order  to  make  room  for  all 
his  buildings,  he  was  obliged  to  remove  several  graves  which 
occupied  the  spot  which  pleased  his  fancy.  Here  he  put  up 
costly  works  of  art,  some  of  which  in  their  ruin  Burckhardt 
thought1  he  recognised,  among  them  a  bas-relief  of  a  lion 
strangling  sheep ;  but  Scholtz  regards  this  rather  as  Phoenician 
workmanship.  More  recent  investigation  still  shows  that  this 
is  modern;  and  Mr  Banks,  at  the  time  of  his  visit,  while  carefully 
examining  the  relic  referred  to  by  Burckhardt,  discovered  an 
Arabic  inscription,  leaving  no  room  to  believe  that  such  a  work 
left  by  Herod  has  survived  the  lapse  of  time.  The  changes 
effected  by  Herod  were  doubly  distasteful  to  the  orthodox  Jews, 
as  it  was  entirely  against  their  traditions  for  any  one  to  build 
upon  the  graves  of  the  dead.  So,  in  the  early  days  of  Tiberias, 
there  wTere  but  few  Jews  who  settled  there:  Herod  was  driven 
to  the  expedient  of  compelling  Galileans  to  be  his  builders; 
Gentile  colonists  were  induced  by  liberal  gifts  to  settle  in  the 
new  city;  the  place  grew  rapidly,  and  at  the  time  of  the  Saviour 
had  become  very  flourishing. 

It  is  not  probable  that  any  older  place  occupied  the  site  of 
Tiberias,  for  the  reason  just  referred  to,  namely,  that  the  Jews 
always  placed  their  graves  just  outside  of  the  city  or  town 
where  they  lived ;  but  this  affords  ground  for  supposing  that 
there  may  have  been  a  place  of  some  importance  in  the  imme¬ 
diate  neighbourhood.2  The  Talmud  speaks  of  a  Rakkath  near 
by,  and  identifies  this  with  the  ancient  Hammath.  It  has  also 
been  supposed  to  be  the  same  as  the  Chinnereth  referred  to  in 
Josh.  xix.  35. 

1  Burckhardt,  Trav.  p.  321. 

2  See  also  Jichus  ha  Abot,  in  Carmoly,  Itineraires ,  pp.  385,  446 ;  also 
Burckhardt,  Gesenius’  ed.  ii.  p.  574 ;  and  Herbelot,  Bib.  Orient,  s.v.  Lok- 
man;  Gunther  Wahl,  Koran ,  p.  383. 

VOL.  IT.  a 



In  the  Gospels  there  is  no  allusion  to  any  visit  of  the  Saviour 
to  the  city  where  His  most  formidable  opponent  lived.  After 
Herod  had  caused  John  the  Baptist  to  be  beheaded  (Matt.  xiv. 
1-22),  Jesus  withdrew  to  the  east  side  of  the  sea,  and  amid  the 
solitudes  there  He  fed  the  great  multitude  who  went  out  to  see 
Him,  supplying  the  wants  of  five  thousand  at  once.  After¬ 
wards  He  returned  (13th  and  14th  verses)  to  Gennesaret,  on 
the  western  side  of  the  lake.  The  beastly  excesses  and  the  vices 
of  the  Homan  court  had  been  transferred  to  this  rankly  growing 
capital  of  the  weak  and  yet  cruel  princes  of  Galilee.  Tiberias 
remained  the  metropolis  of  that  province  till  the  Emperor  Nero 
placed  Agrippa  n.  over  Galilee,  when  Sephoris  became  the 
capital.  Always  in  quarrels  with  the  parent  city  of  Jerusalem, 
the  inhabitants  surrendered  voluntarily  to  Vespasian,  and  their 
city  was  spared.  It  became  in  the  time  of  the  great  Jewish 
afflictions  a  refuge  for  the  rabbis.  The  great  tribunal  of  the 
Sanhedrim  was  transferred  to  Tiberias,  after  having  held  its 
sessions  for  a  while  in  Sephoris.  Thirteen  synagogues  subse¬ 
quently  arose  in  Tiberias ;  and  in  the  beginning  of  the  third 
century  a  school  of  Jewish  legal  lore  was  established,1  which 
afterwards  attained  to  great  celebrity,  and  became  the  centre  of 
those  who  clung  to  the  literal  traditions  of  the  Jewish  faith. 
This  city  became,  in  consequence  of  the  founding  of  the  Tal¬ 
mudic  school,  the  place  where  the  Hebrew  language  was  spoken 
in  its  purity;  and  Jerome  speaks  with  a  certain  degree  of  com¬ 
placency  of  the  advantage  which  he  had  enjoyed  in  learning 
Hebrew  of  a  rabbi  of  Tiberias. 

In  the  fourth  century,  Constantine  the  Great  built  the  first 
Christian  church  which  had  ever  been  known  in  that  city,  and 
named  it  after  St  Peter,  in  allusion  to  his  former  residence  on 
the  shores  of  the  lake  close  by.  The  builder  of  it,  who  was  a 
baptized  J ew,  is  said  to  have  taken  the  materials  for  the  church 
from  an  unfinished  temple,  the  Adrianum,  which  had  been  used 
as  a  bath.  Justinian,  with  his  love  of  magnificence,  surrounded 
the  city  with  massive  walls  ;  in  the  year  449  it  became  the  seat 
of  a  bishopric,  but  this  was  subsequently  included  within  the  see 
of  Nazareth.  The  city  was  sacked  by  the  Caliph  Omar  in  the 
seventh  century,  and  subsequently  by  Saladin 2  in  the  thirteenth, 

1  J.  Lightfooti  Opp.  omn.  Roteocl.  fol.  1686,  vol.  ii.  fol.  223-230. 

2  Abulfedse  Tab.  Syr.  ed.  Koehler,  p.  81. 



when  it  was  much  injured.  It  began  then  to  pass  into  a  state 
of  ruin ;  its  palaces,  churches,  synagogues,  did  not  again  resume 
their  old  splendour,  and  the  ravages  of  earthquakes  only  com¬ 
pleted  the  desolation.  From  that  time  Safed  enjoyed  the  pre¬ 
eminence  which  till  then  had  been  the  possession  of  Tiberias 

The  ancient  city  seems  to  have  extended  at  the  time  of 
Josephus  as  far  along  the  shore  of  the  lake  southward1  as  to 
the  hot  springs,  and  the  ruins  which  are  seen  at  the  present 
day  confirm  the  account.  The  modern  city  is  about  a  mile 
distant  from  the  baths,  and  is  built  of  the  fragments  of  the 
ancient  one.  The  numerous  blocks  of  stone,  many  of  them  of 
Egyptian  syenite,  of  granite,  and  of  marble,  which  strew  the 
ground,  particularly  in  the  neighbourhood  of  the  hot  springs, 
are  in  the  strongest  contrast  with  the  poverty  and  squalor  of  the 
present  town,  whose  walls  were  twenty  feet  high  at  the  time 
of  Burckhardt’ s  visit,  but  which  have  been  so  shattered  by 
the  earthquake  of  1837  that  they  are  not  longer  of  any  avail 
against  the  attacks2  of  the  Beduins;  and  the  garrison  which 
defends  the  city  is  compelled  to  put  up  its  tents  outside,  and 
encamp  there.  Burckhardt,  Turner,  and  Scholtz  have  each 
spoken3  fully  of  the  condition  of  the  city  and  of  its  inhabitants 
(particularly  of  the  Jewish  portion)  at  the  time  of  their  visit, 
and  I  need  only  refer  to  their  statements.  Wilson,4  describing 
his  visit  in  1843,  speaks  fully  of  the  state  of  the  city  after  the 
great  earthquake  had  done  its  work.  Of  the  population  which 
Burckhardt  found  in  Tiberias,  about  four  thousand  souls,  only 
the  half  were  there  at  the  time  of  Bobinson’s  visit.  The  part 
of  the  city  which  had  been  destroyed  wTas  not  restored ;  the 
place  was  wholly  open  on  the  lake  side,  and  not  a  trace  could 
be  found  of  the  formerly  jealously  closed  Jewish  quarter. 
At  the  northern  extremity,  Burckhardt,  as  well  as  Irby  and 
Mangles,5  discovered  the  remains  of  a  very  ancient  portion  of 
the  city  lying  high  above  the  lake,  and  its  walls  were  profusely 

1  Burckhardt,  Trav.  p.  320 ;  Scholtz,  Reise  in  Pal.  1822,  pp.  157,  248. 

2  Wilson,  The  Lands  of  the  Bible ,  ii.  p.  112. 

3  Burckhardt,  Trav.  pp.  320-331  ;  W.  Turner,  Journal ,  etc.,  ii.  pp. 
140-144 ;  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  pp.  380-386. 

4  Wilson,  Lands  of  the  Bible ,  ii.  p.  113. 

5  Irby  and  Mangles,  Trav.  pp.  293-296 ;  Burckhardt,  Trav.  p.  329. 

2  GO 


adorned  with  columns  of  the  most  beautiful  red  granite,  sup¬ 
posed  to  be  Egyptian  in  its  origin.  On  some  of  the  threshing- 
floors  near  by,  Robinson  discovered  shafts  of  polished  syenite, 
three  feet  in  diameter.1  Russegger  discovered  a  portion  of  the 
old  church  of  St  Peter  standing  near  the  lake,  and  took  up  his 
lodgings  for  the  night  in  the  confessional,  only  eight  feet  above 
the  surface  of  the  water.  The  filth,2  the  miasma  arising  from 
the  soil,  the  vermin  bred  in  the  sultry  atmosphere,  have  caused 
it  to  pass  into  a  proverb,  that  “  the  king  of  the  fleas  holds  his 
court  at  Tiberias.”  This  Wilson  found  only  too  true  ;  and 
while  excavating  one  of  the  arches  of  the  Jewish  synagogue, 
he  plucked  these  vermin  off  his  clothes  in  handfuls  :  the  wralls 
were  literally  red  with  them.  The  Arabs  content  themselves 
in  their  misery  by  saying3  that  it  is  “the  curse  of  Allah.” 

Formerly  Tiberias,  with  a  dozen  of  the  adjacent  villages, 
formed  a  district  of  the  pashalic  of  Acre,  and  the  Jews  paid  a 
yearly  tribute  of  three  thousand  five  hundred  piastres  for  the 
protection  which  they  enjoyed.  The  garrison4  did  not  consist, 
as  at  Safed,  of  Mogrebin  from  Africa,  but  of  men  from  Affghan- 
istan  and  Cashmere.5  In  consequence  of  the  large  immigra¬ 
tion  during  the  past  century  of  Spanish  Jews  called  Sephardim, 
and  whose  language  is  still  that  which  they  brought  with  them, 
as  well  as  by  the  settlement  of  numerous  Polish  and  German 
Jews,  called  Ashkenazim,  who  came  from  various  parts  of  Syria 
and  the  Levant,  there  are  to  be  seen  many  grey  beards  in 
Tiberias  as  well  as  in  Jerusalem,  Hebron,  and  Safed,  the  four 
sacred  cities  in  one  of  which  they  hope  to  die,  and  by  their 
dying  to  avert  the  impending  vengeance  which  otherwise  awaits 
the  world.  This  delusion0  has  been  made  general  in  conse¬ 
quence  in  part  of  the  incorrect  interpretation  of  Deut.  xxxii.  43, 
“  Rejoice,  O  ye  nations,  with  His  people;  for  He  will  avenge  the 
blood  of  His  servants,  and  will  render  vengeance  to  His  adver¬ 
saries,  and  will  be  merciful  unto  His  land  and  to  His  people,” 

1  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  385. 

2  Burckliardt,  Trav.  p.  320  ;  Turner,  Journ.,  etc.,  ii.  p.  142 ;  Irby  and 
Mangles,  p.  294. 

3  Irby  and  Mangles,  Trav.  p.  292. 

4  Burckhardt,  Trav.  p.  320. 

5  IV.  Turner,  Journ.,  etc.,  ii.  p.  142. 

fJ  Asker,  Benjamin  von  Tudela,  ii.  p.  93. 



which  is  interpreted  as  if  the  country  could  make  good  the  sins 
of  its  people,  and  as  if  they  who  were  buried  in  Palestine  would 
not  be  called  to  a  future  account.  It  is  this  delusion  which 
brings  so  many  every  year  to  lay  their  bones  in  the  ground 
which  is  endued  with  such  saving  virtues.  And  Tiberias  has, 
in  spite  of  all  its  misfortunes,  been  a  favourite  resort  of  the 
Jews  who  came  to  the  Holy  Land;  and  the  Jewish  population 
has  experienced  also  more  lenity  at  the  hands  of  the  Turks,  than 
that  of  Damascus  and  some  other  cities.  The  J ews  carry  on 
less  trade,  and  are  less  proficient  in  industrial  pursuits,  than 
elsewhere  :  they  spend  the  most  of  their  time  in  Hebrew  studies, 
and  in  religious  contemplations.  In  the  libraries  Scholtz  found 
manuscripts  of  the  fifth  century,  and  Hebrew  and  rabbinical 
books  from  European  presses  in  Amsterdam,  Lisbon,  Italy, 
Germany,  and  Constantinople.1  Among  the  evils  to  which 
they  are  exposed,  not  the  least  is  the  plague,  which  is  not  a 
stranger  in  Tiberias.  It  will  be  a  question  which  only  the 
future  can  solve,  whether  this  city  shall  ever  rise  again  from 
the  low  condition  into  which  it  has  sunk.  But  the  long- 
cherished  delusion,  that  the  Messiah  will  make  His  appearance 
at  Tiberias,  is  one  which  is  so  confidently  maintained,  that  many 
foolish  devotees  will  yet  be  persuaded  thither.  The  Scripture 
passage  which  is  pleaded  in  favour  of  this  opinion  is  Isa.  ix.  2, 
“  The  people  that  sat  in  darkness  have  seen  a  great  light,”  etc.: 
they  who  repeat  it  have  no  conception  that  the  fulfilment  of 
the  prophecy  has  already  come,  and  was  referred  to  by  John 
the  Baptist  in  Matt.  iii.  12-14. 

At  the  time  of  Wilson’s2  visit  (1843)  there  was  a  popu¬ 
lation  of  about  2000  inhabitants,  of  whom  eight  hundred  were 
Jews.  The  great  destructiveness  of  the  catastrophe  of  1837 
does  not  seem  to  have  prevented  population  from  returning  to 
Tiberias.  There  are  the  same  Jewish  sects  there  which  Burck- 
liardt  found — the  Sephardim  and  the  Ashkenazim.  Wilson 
studied  their  ways  with  a  curious  eye,  and  was  received  as  a 
guest  by  the  chief  rabbi.  The  Sephardim  are  mostly  natives  of 
Tunis,  Morocco,  Fez,  and  other  parts  of  northern  Africa.  In 
addition  to  their  synagogue,  they  have  three  public  rooms 
where  young  men  read  the  Scriptures  and  offer  their  comments. 
The  conversation  of  this  sect  is  carried  on  mainly  in  Spanish 
1  Scholtz,  lleise ,  p.  248.  2  Wilson,  Lands  of  the  Bible ,  ii.  pp.  129-134. 



and  Hebrew,  very  little  in  Arabic.  They  have  almost  no  con¬ 
nection  with  Europe.  The  Ashkenazim  are  not  so  numerous, 
embracing  a  population  of  about  three  hundred,  while  the 
Sephardim  amount  to  five  hundred.  They  are  from  Austria, 
Russian  Poland,  and  Galicia,  and  use  the  Polish  language :  they 
do  not  pay  tribute  as  a  rule  to  the  pasha  of  Acre,  as  most  of 
them  are  provided  with  passes,  and  are  under  the  protection  of 
European  consulates.  The  information  which  Burckliardt  gives 
regarding  the  Jews  of  Tiberias  relates,  according  to  Wilson, 
only  to  the  Ashkenazim,  whose  worship  as  it  is  conducted  in  the 
synagogue  is  very  striking.  At  the  daily  reading  of  the  Psalms 
of  David,  the  listeners  accompany  with  gestures,  which  often¬ 
times  are  very  earnest,  and  their  voices  chime  in  in  a  very  high 
key :  they  often  imitate  trombones  and  trumpets  through  the 
hollow  of  their  hand,  and  beat  time  with  their  fists  and  feet. 
The  references  to  the  coming  of  the  Messiah  excite  the  wildest 
excitement  throughout  the  synagogue,  which  subsides  into  quiet 
as  the  worshippers  take  their  way  homeward.1 

2.  El-Mejel  ( Migdol ),  Magdala;  el-Ghuweir  ( Little  Ghor ), 
or  the  Plain  of  Gennesaret ;  the  Wadi  el  Hammam;  the 
Kalaat  Ibn  Maan ,  or  Hammam;  the  Castle  of  Doves, 

North  of  Tiberias,  on  the  west  coast  of  the  lake,  a  single 
day’s  journey  takes  the  traveller  through  the  sites  of  Magdala, 
Bethsaida,  Gennesaret,  and  Capernaum, — scenes  of  classic  in¬ 
terest  in  connection  with  the  New  Testament.  Few  traces  of 
their  former  aspect  are  now  to  be  seen,  however. 

Going  northward  from  Tiberias,  we  meet  in  half  an  hour 
a  small  wadi,  through  which  a  path  may  be  taken  which  will 
lead  into  the  regular  road  from  Tabor  to  Damascus.  Here  lie 
five  or  six  profuse  springs  near  together,  to  which  the  name 
Ain  el  Berideh  has  been  given,2  i.e.  the  u  cool  fountains,”  to 
distinguish  them  from  the  hot  ones  south  of  Tiberias.  They 
have  a  warmer  temperature  than  the  air;  at  least  this  was  so 
at  the  time  when  the  point  was  tested :  the  atmosphere  was 
84°  Fahr.,  the  springs  86°.  The  water  is  very  clear,  and  only 
slightly  brackish.  Robinson  was  unable  to  decide  whether  the 

1  See  Tristram’s  account  of  the  present  state  of  Tiberias,  Land  of  Israel , 
pp.  424,  496. 

2  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  p.  394. 



cisterns  which  had  been  built  to  hold  the  water  were  ancient 
or  modern ;  they  were,  however,  overshadowed  by  oleanders 
and  by  nubk-bushes.  Irby  and  Mangles  speak1  of  them  as  six 
Roman  baths  of  mineral  water,  and  of  a  lukewarm  temperature : 
this  Wilson  confirms.  Schubert  speaks  of  a  small  arm  of  the 
lake  about  a  mile  north  of  Tiberias,  into  which  runs  a  brook  of 
warm  water,  that  issues  from  a  cavity  in  the  rock  over  which 
oleanders  grow  profusely.  His  account  as  to  distance  agrees 
with  that  of  the  travellers  already  referred  to  in  this  connection, 
although  Schubert  gives2  the  name  of  Szermadein  to  the  place. 
Yet  it  cannot  be  denied  that,  in  respect  to  the  number  of  the 
springs,  the  form  and  extent  of  the  wall  which  encloses  them 
and  the  characteristics  of  the  water  yielded,  there  are  discre 
pancies3  in  the  various  travellers  who  have  alluded  to  them, 
only  to  be  explained  by  their  concealment  beneath  the  oleanders, 
and  by  the  more  or  less  hasty  manner  in  which  they  have  been 

Passing  northward,  we  find  the  shore  somewhat  higher  than 
before,  and  soon  come  to  an  open  plain,  in  which  lies4  the 
pitiful  little  Mohammedan  village  of  Mejel,  once  enclosed 
within  w^alls  which  are  now  a  heap  of  ruins.  Seetzen5  spent  a 
night  there,  and  estimated  the  distance  as  one  and  a  quarter 
hours  from  Tiberias  :  he  writes  the  name  Majel,  Burckhardt 
Mejel.  The  latter  recognised  the  place,  judging  from  the 
name,  as  the  site  of  the  ancient  Magdala,  from  which  Mary 
Magdalene  probably  received  her  name  (Mark  xv.  40 ;  Luke 
viii.  2)  ;  a  place  which,  according  to  the  whole  tenor  of  the 
Gospels  (comp.  Matt.  xv.  29,  39,  with  Mark  viii.  10),  must 
have  lain  on  the  west  side  of  the  lake.6  Dalmanutha,  which 
Mark  mentions  in  connection  with  it,  appears  to  have  been  on 
the  border  of  Magdala :  its  name  does  not  seem  to  have  been 

And,  indeed,  it  is  a  singular  thing  that  the  name  of  a  little 

1  Irby  and  Mangles,  Tran.  p.  300  ;  Wilson,  Lands  of  the  Bible ,  ii.  p.  135. 

2  Von  Schubert,  Reise,  iii.  p.  245. 

3  See  Buckingham’s  Tran,  in  Pal.  ii.  p.  334 ;  Kitto,  Palestine ,  Phys. 
Geog.  of  ii.  p.  234,  Note  6 ;  Burckhardt,  Tran.  p.  320. 

4  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  p.  397. 

5  Seetzen,  Mon.  Corresp.  xviii.  p.  349  ;  Burckhardt,  Tran.  p.  320. 

6  K.  v.  Raumer,  Pal.  p.  122,  Note ;  also  p.  130 



fishing  village  lying  on  the  border  of  the  sea,  and  sheltered  by 
high  cliffs,  has  continued  to  be  called  as  it  was  in  the  Saviour’s 
time,  while  many  of  the  great  cities  of  the  world  have  wholly 
disappeared.  And  we  have  the  more  reason  to  be  grateful  in 
this  instance,  from  the  fact  that  this  one  is  so  closely  connected 
with  the  memory  of  Mary  Magdalene. 

The  supposition  that  Magdala  was  on  the  east  side  of  the 
lake,1  where  indeed  there  was  a  “  Migdol  by  Gadara,”  is 
entirely  groundless  ;  and  there  are  even  in  the  Talmud  repeated 
allusions  to  Magdala  as  being  in  the  neighbourhood  of  Tiberias, 
and  a  favourite  resort  of  learned  Jews.2  The  expression  “by 
Gadara”  was  unquestionably  added  to  the  other  place  of  this 
name,  in  order  to  distinguish  it  from  the  home  of  Mary 
Magdalene.  Gesenius  thinks3  it  probable  that  the  Migdal-el 
alluded  to  in  Josh.  xix.  38  as  one  of  the  cities  of  Naphtali  is 
the  Magdala  on  the  western  shore  of  Lake  Tiberias ;  but  as 
the  Hebrew  word  indicates  the  Tower  of  God,  and  as  the 
domain  of  Zebulun  covered  the  territory  south  of  Capernaum 
(which  lay,  according  to  Matt.  iv.  13,  on  the  borders  of 
Naphtali  and  Zebulun),  the  view  of  Gesenius  does  not  seem 
admissible,  though  the  name  Migdal  is  a  Hebrew  word  which 
exactly  corresponds  to  the  Greek  Magdala,  and  although 
Buckingham  claims  to  have  discovered  the  remains  of  a  square 
gate  which  he  thinks  to  be  of  very  ancient  origin.  Wilson 
discovered4  that  a  band  of  gipsies,  fifty  in  number,  had  taken 
up  their  abode  in  Mejel,  and  gained  a  living  as  tinkers, 
musicians,  and  as  agricultural  labourers ;  they  claim  to  be 
Mohammedans.  Wilson  addressed  them  in  one  of  the  dialects 
of  India,  and  was  understood  perfectly, — a  sure  proof  of  their 
Indian  extraction,  of  which  they  had  lost  all  tradition.  They 
lived  in  huts  which  they  built  for  themselves  out  of  dry  rushes. 
He  remarks  that  the  village  is  not  without  traces  of  ancient 


walls  and  foundations,  perhaps  belonging  to  the  Magdalum 
Capellum  Magdalce  Mar  102  to  which  Breydenbach  alludes. 

From  the  springs  at  Tiberias  the  shore  runs  north-west5  as 

1  Scholtz,  Reise ,  p.  158.  2  Lightfooti  Opp.  Omn.  ii.  p.  226. 

3  Gesenius,  Note  to  Burckhardt,  ii.  p.  104 ;  comp.  Raumer,  p.  130, 

Note  39. 

4  Wilson,  Lands  of  the  Bible ,  ii.  p.  306. 

5  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  p.  397  *,  Burckhardt,  Trav.  p.  359. 



far  as  to  Mejel,  then  it  bears  north-east.  The  hills  of  lime¬ 
stone,  interspersed  with  basalt  dykes,  come  down  very  near  to 
the  sea  up  to  that  point,  and  then  recede,  leaving  a  fine 
crescent-shaped  plain  two  or  three  miles  long  and  a  third  of 
a  mile  wide,  at  the  northern  extremity  of  which  is  Khan 

At  the  south-west  this  plain  begins  to  ascend  gradually 
to  a  height  of  three  or  four  hundred  feet,  towards  the  high 
plateau  of  Sahel  Hattin :  the  Wadi  el  Hum  am  (the  Hammam 
of  Burckhardt),  winding  down  the  same  elevated  tract  in  a 
south-westerly  direction,  breaks  through  the  ridge,  and  north 
of  the  same  runs  to  the  sea.  Towards  the  west  and  north  the 
high  land  rises  less  steeply  from  the  sea,  and  to  a  less  altitude. 

On  the  high  precipitous  cliff  on  the  north-west  side  of  the 
Wadi  el  Humam,  and  a  half-hour’s  distance  west  of  Mejel, 
lie  the  ruins  of  Kalaat  Ibn  Ma’an,  described  by  Burckhardt, 
Irby,  and  Mangles.  A  careful  study  of  them  is  needed 
yet,  in  the  opinion  of  Olshausen,1  to  set  at  rest  some  ques¬ 
tions  of  great  historical  interest,  supposed  by  him  to  be  con¬ 
nected  with  them.  Burckhardt  heard2  much  about  this  old 
castle,  which  was  named  after  the  son  of  a  certain  Ma’an,  * 
or,  according  to  some,  was  more  strictly  designated  Kalaat 
Hamam,  or  the  Castle  of  Doves,  in  consequence  of  many 
wild  pigeons  being  found  in  that  neighbourhood.  Schubert 
confirms  the  reason  of  the  latter  name,  for  he  found  large 
numbers  of  turtle-doves  which  had  made  their  nests  in  the 
cavities  of  the  wadi.  Burckhardt  describes  the  castle  as  a 
singular  structure,  apparently  made  by  connecting  ancient 
caves,  many  of  them  of  large  size,  by  means  of  passage-ways, 
building  up  rude  external  walls  where  weak  places  existed, 
and  here  and  there  breaking  up  the  interior  in  the  same 
way.  A  single  footpath  leads  into  it  from  below,  running 
up  so  steeply  that  a  horse  cannot  ascend  it;  in  the  interior, 
which  is  large  enough  to  shelter  six  hundred  men,  there 
are  several  cisterns  cut  in  the  rock.  The  walls  are  at  present 
in  a  very  imperfect  state  :  a  few  arches  testify  to  the  Gothic 
character  of  the  structure,  and  make  it  probable,  according 

1  Olshausen,  Rev.  in  Wien  Jahrb.  vol.  cii.  p.  215. 

2  Burckhardt,  Trav.  p.  331  ;  v.  Schubert,  Reise,  iii.  251 ;  Wilson, 
Lands ,  etc.,  ii.  p.  138. 



to  Burckhardt,  that  it  was  the  work  of  the  crusaders.  Mr 
Banks,  with  his  companions  Irby  and  Mangles,1  spent  two 
days  in  examining  the  place,  but  did  not  publish  the  result  of 
his  investigations.  He  held  the  castle  to  be  the  Jotapata 
which  Josephus  mentions,  in  which  conclusion  I  do  not  agree, 
as  will  be  seen  in  another  place.  Mr  Banks  is  very  certain, 
however,  that  the  citadel  is  older  than  the  Boman  occu¬ 
pation  of  Palestine.  In  the  various  recesses  which  previous 
travellers2  considered  to  be  burial-places,  not  a  trace  of  what 
might  indicate  sepulture  there  was  seen.  On  the  way  from 
Mejel  to  this  castle,  there  were  passed  on  the  left  side  the 
remains  of  several  convents,  as  they  seemed, — one  built  close 
against  the  steep  wall ;  and  on  the  other  side  was  the  village  of 
Erbed  or  Irbid,  where  were  seen  some  Bom  an  ruins.  This 
Irbid  or  Irbil  is  the  Arabic  form  for  Arbela,  probably  the 
house  Arbel,  or  Beth-arbel,  mentioned3  in  Hos.  x.  14,  which 
was  destroyed  by  Shalman.  It  is  without  question  the  site  of 
the  caves  of  Arbela,  where  robber  hordes  used  to  issue  forth 
and  attack  Herod  as  he  went  to  Sephoris ;  it  is  also  the  place 
which  Josephus  fortified  against  the  Bomans.  Yon  Baumer, 
Bobinson,  and  Wilson  all  agree  in  thinking  that  the  whole 
body  of  evidence  makes  this  certain.  The  last-named  traveller 
has  paid  particular  attention  to  the  admirable  character  of  the 
place  as  a  defensive  post.  It  commands  the  road  from  rocky 
Galilee  to  Damascus ;  it  communicates  directly  with  the  Castle 
of  Doves.  Another  road  runs  to  the  Wadi  Babadiyah,  another 
(open  for  a  part  of  the  year  at  least)  to  Wadi  el  Amud,  and 
still  another  to  the  great  spring  Ain  et  Tin  at  the  Khan 
Minyeh.  Wilson4  confirms  Burckhardt’s  descriptions  of  many 
natural  caves  in  the  limestone  range,  which  earlier  travellers 
took  for  burying-places,5  but  he  says  that  they  begin  in  the 
upper  third  of  the  perpendicular  rock-wall.  The  plunge  down 
into  the  Wadi  Hammam  is  very  precipitous.  On  the  side  of 
the  ravine  opposite  to  Kalaat  there  are  other  caves  which 
travellers  before  Wilson  had  not  noticed.  The  so-called 
Kurun  Hattin,  or  Horns  of  Hattin  ( Mons  beatitudinis ),  are 

1  Irby  and  Mangles,  Trav.  p.  299.  2  Tristram,  p.  448. 

3  H.  Relandi,  Pal.  p.  575. 

4  Wilson,  Lands  of  the  Bible ,  ii.  pp.  138,  307-309. 

5  Clarke,  Trav.  tom.  ii.  p.  466. 



only  tlie  continuation  of  the  rocky  W adi  el  Hamam,  whose 
topographical  character  could  not  fail  to  be  remarked  at  a  very 
early  period,  although  the  ruined  walls  upon  them  seem  to 
date  only  from  a  modern  period. 

The  fertile  plain,  at  whose  south-east  corner  the  present 
village  of  Mejel  with  its  gipsy  population  lies,  bears  the  local 
name  of  Ard  el  Mejel  i1  elsewhere  it  is  known  among  the 
Arabs  as  el-Ghuweir,  or  the  Little  Ghor,  and  corresponds, 
even  in  the  details  of  extent,  to  the  district,  thirty  stadia  long 
and  twenty  broad,  which  Josephus  designated  as  Gennesar  or 
Gennesaret,  and  which  he  pictures  in  the  most  glowing  colours, 
although  it  may  be  with  a  touch  of  exaggeration.  From 
Mejel  to  the  Khan  Minyeh  there  is  a  straight  path,  about  an 
hour  long,  leading  near  the  lake.  Burckhardt,  who  entered 
the  plain  from  the  north,  says  that  the  pasturage  is  so  rich 
there  that  it  has  become  a  proverb  in  the  neighbourhood :  on 
the  shore  he  found  sedge  and  rushes,  but  no  traces  of  the 
aromatic  reed  which  Strabo  ascribes  to  Gennesar.  He  found 
the  plain  scattered  over  with  the  trees  which  bear  the  names 
dum  and  theder ,  probably  the  sidr  or  lotus  napecci.  Seetzen, 
who  also  entered  the  plain  on  the  north  side,  was  charmed 
with  the  place,  and  thought  it  worthy  of  having  been  one  of 
the  favourite  resorts  of  the  Saviour.  It  was  near  it  that  he 
discovered2  the  Khan  Bat  Szaida,  referred  to  in  a  preceding 
page.  Yon  Schubert,  who  entered  the  plain  from  the  south, 
speaks3  of  its  great  fertility;  he  also  alludes  to  the  brooks 
which  enter  from  the  west  and  water  it,  particularly  the  Wadi 
el  Hamam,  which  comes  down  from  Hattin ;  he  also  speaks,  as 
does  Burckhardt  also,  of  a  village  called  Senjol  lying  in  the 
heights  of  the  west.  In  this,  however,  he  follows  Berghaus’ 
Atlas,  which  in  its  turn  is  based  upon  Burckhardt’ s  statement. 
But  neither  Kobinson  nor  Wilson,  in  their  exceedingly  careful 
examination  of  the  plain  of  Gennesaret,  were  able  to  discover 
such  a  place,  and  the  former  supposes  that  Burckhardt  con¬ 
founds  Irbid  (Arbela)  with  it.  Both  Robinson  and  Wilson 
allude  in  the  strongest  terms  to  the  fertility  of  the  plain,  which 

1  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  442-447  ;  Wilson,  Lands  of  the  Bible,  ii. 
pp.  136-140,  306  ;  Burckhardt,  Trav.  p.  319. 

2  Seetzen,  Mon.  Corresp.  xviii.  p.  348. 

s  Von  Schubert,  Reise ,  iii.  p.  251. 



remains  just  as  it  was  at  the  time  of  Josephus,  excepting  that 
it  is  now  used  mainly  for  pasture,  and  lies  fallow.  The  soil 
consists  of  a  black  loam  formed  by  the  mingling  of  decomposed 
basalt  with  the  alluvium  of  the  lake.  In  the  morasses  which 
occur,  rice  flourishes  finely,  and  the  few  acres  which  are  else¬ 
where  under  cultivation  yield  ample  returns  of  all  kinds  of  crops. 

On  the  west  side,  directly  below  the  Castle  of  Doves, 
and  at  the  opening  of  Wadi  el  Hamam,  Robinson  saw  the 
ruins j of  a  village  called  Churbel  AYadi  el  Hamam.  Wilson, 
who  entered  the  plain  at  the  outlet  of  this  wadi,  made  his  way 
along  the  west  side,  passing  the  ruins  of  Abu  Shusheh,  which 
Robinson1  speaks  of  as  a  mere  ruined  village,  without  memorials 
of  antiquity.  Here  Wilson  found  some  storehouses,  in  which 
the  Arabs  deposited  the  results  of  their  harvestings.  This  place 
Pococke"  thought  was  the  Bethsaida  of  the  Gospels,  because,  in 
reply  to  his  direct  questions  put  to  the  Arabs  whether  it  were 
not  so,  he  was  told  that  it  was  called  Baitsida.  He  speaks  of 
seeing  there  cisterns  and  buildings,  among  them  a  large  church, 
with  a  door  of  finely  wrought  marble,  and  several  pillars.  No 
subsequent  eye-witness  confirms  his  account,  however.  It  may 
be,  that  whatever  he  may  have  seen,  has  been  converted  into 
the  corn  magazines  of  the  Arabs,  to  which  Wilson  alludes.. 

3.  The  Springs  and  Brooles  of  the  Plain  of  Gennesaret :  the 
Khan  Minyeh ,  at  the  northern  extremity  :  Bethsaida,  the 
Bat  Szaida  of  Seetzen . 

Robinson  took  his  way  from  Mejel  through  the  plain, 
following  an  artificial  watercourse,  which  led  him  to  the  out¬ 
let  of  the  Wadi  Rabadiyah,  which  has  been  already  alluded  to. 
Towards  the  south  he  discovered  in  the  plain  a  spring  called 
Ain  el  Mudanwarah,  or  the  u  round  fountain  it  was  walled 
up,  and  was  about  a  hundred  feet  in  diameter  and  two  feet 
deep,  but  was  so  overgrown  with  bushes  that  few  travellers 
have  ever  observed  it.  Pococke,  however,  alludes  to  it  under 
this  name,3  and  supposes  that  near  it  lay  the  ancient  Caper¬ 
naum, — a  view  which  Robinson  at  first  held,  but  which  he  was 
obliged  to  relinquish,  from  not  finding  any  architectural  relics 

1  Wilson,  Lands ,  eic.,  ii.  p.  310  ;  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  340. 

2  R.  Pococke,  Trav.  Ger.  ed.  ii.  p.  99. 

3  Pococke,  Pt.  ii.  p.  105. 



whatever  in  the  neighbourhood.  lie  remarks  that  the  water 
of  the  spring  is  of  service  in  supplying  the  plain  with  mois¬ 
ture,  but  not  nearly  so  much  so  as  the  stream  which  courses 
down  the  Wadi  Rabadiyah,  and  which  is  distributed  over  the 
northern  and  the  southern  part  of  the  plain.1 

Robinson,  who  did  not  follow  the  direct  path  along  the  sea- 
coast,  selected,  for  the  better  examination  of  the  wdiole  tract,  a 
western  course,  which  led  him  not  far  from  the  base  of  the 
cliff,  and  near  the  opening  of  the  Wadi  Rabadiyah.  On  his 
way  he  passed  a  limestone  pillar,  twenty  feet  in  length  and 
two  feet  in  diameter,  in  whose  neighbourhood,  however,  he  was 
unable  to  discover  any  trace  of  a  former  town.  The  northern 
portion  of  the  plain  he  found  less  abundantly  watered  than  the 
southern  :  here  and  there  the  ground  was  dry,  and  thistles  were 

The  Khan  Minyeh  wTas  reached  by  Robinson,  following  his 
roundabout  way  from  Mejel,  in  an  hour  and  a  half.  Seetzen, 
however,  was  a  quarter  of  an  hour  longer2  in  reaching  the 
place,  which  he  calls  Bat  Szaida,  and  which  I  think,  notwith¬ 
standing,  is  the  one  mentioned  by  Robinson  under  the  first- 
mentioned  name.  The  statement  of  Seetzen,  that  the  place 
was  deserted  and  the  khan  fallen,  together  with  his  being 
obliged  to  cross  a  brackish  brook  coming  from  the  north  a  short 
time  before  he  reached  it,  is  so  consistent  with  the  accounts  of 
other  travellers,  and  with  Burckhardt’s  explicit  allusion  to  the 
brackish  brook  Ain  Tabegha,  whose  waters  drove  the  wheel  of  a 
mill,  that  it  puts  it  almost  beyond  question,  that  the  deserted 
khan  mentioned  by  Seetzen  is  identical  with  that  which  so 
many  other  travellers  have  spoken  of  by  another  name.  It  is  a 
singular  fact,  and  one  that  cannot  be  overlooked,  that  the  khan 
alluded  to  has  been  called  Minyeh  for  many  generations  ;  for 
even  Bahaeddin,  in  the  Vita  Saladini ,  gives  it  this  name.  The 
appellation  has  been  changed,  it  is  true,  in  the  arbitrary  method 
of  spelling  Arabic  words  ;  but  it  has  remained  essentially  the 
same,  despite  its  varied  forms,  Mini,  Menieh,  Elmenie,  el- 
Moinie,  Almuny,  Mennye,  etc.  And  almost  no  one  of  those 

1  Josephi  Opp.  omn.  ed.  Haverc.  T.  ii.  fol.  258 ;  Note  e,  in  Casaub. 
Exercit.  edit.  Lond.  p.  299. 

2  Seetzen,  Mon.  Corresp.  xviii.  p.  548  ;  Burckhardt,  Gesenius’  ed.  ii. 
p.  558. 



who  have  used  any  of  these  appellatives,  has  been  apparently 
cognizant  of  the  name  which  Seetzen  gave  the  place.  And 
Robinson  and  Wilson,  whose  efforts  were  so  great  to  identify 
every  possible  spot  in  the  neighbourhood  of  the  Lake  of 
Tiberias,  laid  no  importance  whatever  upon  Seetzen’s  statement 
regarding  Bat  Szaida. 

Bethsaida,  the  city  in  Galilee  which  bore  that  name,  and 
the  home  of  Andrew,  Peter,  and  Philip  (John  i.  44,  xii.  21), 
must,  according  to  Mark  vi.  45,  53,  have  lain1  in  the  neighbour¬ 
hood  of  Capernaum,  as  did  Chorazin  also,  which  is  spoken  of 
in  direct  connection  with  Bethsaida  (Matt.  xi.  21 ;  Luke  x.  13). 
Eusebius  and  Jerome  state  that  Capernaum  was  in  existence 
in  their  time,  and  that  it  lay  close  by  the  sea.  This  Eusebius 
could  testify  explicitly  to,  since  he  had  been  on  the  spot.  He 
also  states  that  Chorazin  was  two  Roman  miles  from  Caper¬ 
naum,  but  lay  in  ruins. 

It  is  unquestionably  the  fact,  that  travellers  in  Palestine, 
as  wTell  as  elsewhere  in  the  East,  are  very  certain  to  receive 
the  answer  which  they  hope  to  get,  when  they  put  leading 
questions ;  and  on  this  account  it  was  a  first  principle  with 
Robinson,  for  which  we  cannot  be  too  grateful  to  him,  never  to 
put  questions  in  such  a  form  as  would  indicate  what  he  ex¬ 
pected  or  hoped  the  answer  would  be.  He  might  have  largely 
increased  the  list,  had  he  wished,  of  the  glaring  errors  which 
have  crept  into  geography,  in  consequence  of  the  habit  of 
putting  leading  questions,  and  of  trusting  to  the  answers.  But 
in  this  case  Robinson  seems  to  go  too  far  in  suspecting  the 
possibility  of  monkish  legends  attaching  themselves  to  this 
deserted  place,  as  well  as  in  distrusting  Seetzen  on  the  ground 
of  believing  too  readily, — a  man  whose  acumen  had  led  him 
shortly  before  to  such  striking  results  in  the  discovery 
of  Bethsaida  Julias  on  the  east  side  of  the  lake.  Robinson 
thinks  that  Seetzen  heard  the  name  Bat  Szaida  because  he 
was  so  much  off  his  guard  as  to  ask  leading  questions.  But 
Seetzen  says  expressly  that  the  khan  was  uninhabited  and 
deserted,  and  therefore  no  legend  could  be  connected  with  it. 
Besides,  had  he  followed  a  legend,  as  Pococke  and  others  did, 
the  ruins  would  have  been  exhibited  farther  away  from  the 
lake,  and  not  in  such  a  place  as  would  show  that  there  must 
1  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  pp.  404,  409. 



have  been  a  mere  fishing  village.  If  Bethsaida  had  been  a 
place  which  the  monkish  tales  invested  with  any  special  interest 
or  sanctity,  the  name  would  have  been  given  to  it  in  the 
descriptions  of  the  countless  pilgrims  to  the  spot.  But  this  has 
not  been  the  case ;  and  only  in  Cotovicus — who  spent  some  time 
in  1598,  in  company  with  a  fishing  caravan,  at  the  spot — do  we 
meet  the  name  Bethsaida1  applied  to  the  place.  Seetzen  gives 
no  reason,  indeed,  for  adopting  this  name  Khan  Bat  Szaida, 
excepting  that,  coming  from  the  eastern  side  of  the  lake,  he  was 
left  there  by  his  guide  Hussein,  and  compelled  to  find  his  way 
alone  back  to  Tiberias.  From  this  guide  he  seems  to  have 
learned  the  name ;  and  it  may  be,  that  the  dwellers  in  the 
remote  and  unfrequented  country  farther  east  had  preserved 
more  carefully  the  name  of  a  New  Testament  fishing  village, 
than  those  had  done  who  stood  more  in  the  great  line  of  travel 
over  the  Via  Maris :  there  the  term  appears  to  have  given  way 
to  the  word  Minyeh  ;  and  only  those  who  live  more  apart 
from  intercourse  with  men  keep  the  old  name  in  a  form  almost 

4.  Khan  Minyeh;  the  Springs  Ain  Tin  and  Tabighah ;  the  way 
to  Tell  Hum ;  Ruins  of  Capernaum. 

The  Khan  Minyeh3  was  once  a  large  building  composed  of 
basaltic  tufa,  but  now  lying  in  ruins.  It  served  the  necessities 
of  the  large  number  of  caravans  which  used  to  follow  the  Via 
Maris ,  and  tarry  here  on  their  way  from  Jacob’s  Bridge  at 
the  north-east  to  Tiberias.  Here  the  mountains  come  down 
very  closely  to  the  lake,  and  follow  its  border  on  to  the  place 
where  the  Jordan  enters.  Between  the  khan  and  the  lake 
there  is  a  large  spring,  whose  waters  flow  forth  in  sufficient 
quantity  to  form  a  brook :  the  spring  is  called  Ain  Tin,  from  a 
fie;  tree  which  overshadows  it.  A  short  distance  south  of  the 

1  J.  Cotovicus,  Itinerarium  Hierosolymitanum  et  Syriacum ,  l.c.  p.  358. 

2  In  illustration  of  this  it  may  be  remarked,  that  the  people  in  Gold¬ 
smith’s  native  village  always  call  it  now  u  Auburn,”  the  name  given  it  by 
the  poet ;  but  in  the  retired  country  a  few  miles  away,  the  peasants  speak 
of  it  as  Lishoy,  the  old  name. — Ed. 

3  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  p.  405  ;  Wilson,  Lands  of  the  Bible ,  ii. 
pp.  138,  141.  (See  an  extract  from  Tristram's  Land  of  Israel ,  with  refer¬ 
ence  to  the  sites  of  Capernaum,  Cliorazin,  and  Bethsaida,  in  the  appendix 
to  this  volume.) 



khan  there  is  a  low  knoll,  on  which  lie  ruins  of  consideraole 
extent.  They  do  not,  it  is  true,  indicate  any  great  degree  of 
antiquity,  and  Robinson  was  unable  to  learn  that  they  bore  any 
name.1  North  of  the  khan  the  plain  closes,  and  a  steep  rocky 
path  leads  up  from  it  over  the  hill  which  presses  close  to  the 
lake,  and  descends,  after  a  distance  traversed  in  about  twenty 
minutes,  to  the  shore  again,  where  lies  the  village  Ain  et 
Tabighali,2  with  its  jetting  springs  pouring  forth  their  lukewarm 
and  brackish  water  in  such  quantity  as  to  even  drive  several 
mills.  To  the  east  there  is  a  round  cistern,  and  known  bv  the 
name  Ain  Eyub,  the  spring  of  Job.  The  wall  which  sur¬ 
rounded  this  cistern  Wilson  thought  was  constructed  like  those 
of  the  Roman  baths,  and  Buckingham  conjectured  that  it  had 
once  served  that  purpose ;  yet  his  description  is  so  much 
indebted  to  bis  fancy,  as  to  detract  very  much  from  its  value. 

From  this  point,3  according  to  Robinson,  the  path  runs 
along  the  brow  of  the  line  of  hills  whose  base  presses  close  to 
the  shores  of  the  lake,  and  which  are  neither  so  steep  nor  so 
high  as  those  which  are  met  farther  south.  The  ground  is 
thickly  strewn  with  fragments  of  basaltic  stone,  between  which 
shoots  up  the  grass.  Soon  the  traveller  arrives  at  the  ruins  of 
Tell  Hum,  which  lie  near  a  slight  curve  of  the  shore,  and 
somewhat  above  the  level  of  the  sea,  and  which  are  commonlv 
considered  to  mark  the  site  of  the  ancient  Capernaum.  Behind, 
the  land  rises  gently  and  to  a  considerable  height.  The  path 
winds  along  high  up  above  the  lake,  and  at  length  approaches 
the  place  where  the  Jordan  enters.  In  order  to  see  the  ruins 
it  is  necessary  to  leave  the  path,  and  to  come  down  the  rough, 
rocky  side  of  the  hill.  Robinson  and  Wilson  both  found  the 
distance  from  the  Ain  Eyub  to  Tell  Hum  about  that  of  an 
hour’s  walk.  To  go  from  the  Khan  Minyeh  to  Tell  Hum 
requires  about  an  hour  and  twenty  minutes. 

Neither  Seetzen,  Burckhardt,  nor  von  Schubert  were  able  to 
observe  the  ruins  of  Tell  Hum4  with  special  care.  Buckingham 
described  them  in  considerable  detail,  it  is  true ;  but  I  prefer  to 

1  Buckingham,  Trav.  in  Pal.  ii.  p.  336  ;  von  Schubert,  Reise ,  iii.  p.  252. 

2  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  p.  407  ;  Wilson,  Lands  of  the  Bible ,  ii. 
p.  142. 

3  Buckingham,  Travels ,  ii.  p.  339  ;  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  p.  407. 

4  Buckingham,  Trav.  ii.  pp.  346-351. 



trust  the  accounts  of  Robinson  1  and  Wilson,  rather  than 
to  accept  his,  which  do  not  always  betray  a  truth-loving 
nature.  The  ruins  are  of  a  place  once  evidently  of  importance, 
but  now  in  a  state  of  perfect  decay  and  desolation.  They 
extend  for  half  an  English  mile  along  the  coast,  and  as  far  into 
the  interior.  They  consist  of  the  fragments  of  ancient  walls 
and  foundations,  and  only  two  are  in  any  tolerable  state  of 
preservation.  Of  these  only  one  can  be  said  to  be  standing. 
The  rank  growth  of  bushes  and  weeds  has  prevented  travellers 
making  any  careful  measurements  of  Tell  Hum  and  the  extent 
of  its  ruins.  The  one  structure  which  is  standing  is  near  the 
shore  of  the  lake,  and  is  evidently  of  modern  origin,  although 
it  is  composed  of  the  architectural  fragments  of  the  old  and 
perished  city.  Robinson  thinks  that  it  is  the  marble  church 
which  Pococke2  speaks  of  seeing  there.  Not  far  away  lie  the 
ruins  of  a  building  of  great  extent,  and  which,  in  respect  of 
elaborate  workmanship,  seemed  to  surpass  anything  to  be 
found  in  Palestine.  The  length  Robinson  could  not  ascertain 
with  exactness ;  yet  he  assigns  a  hundred  and  five  feet  to  the 
northern  wall,  and  eighty-five  feet  to  the  breadth  from  east  to 
west.  Within  this  area  there  lay  at  the  time  of  his  visit  several 
pillars  scattered  around,  wrought  out  of  the  indigenous  lime¬ 
stone,  and  decorated  with  beautiful  Corinthian  capitals,  hewn 
architraves,  elaborate  friezes,  and  pedestals,  many  of  which, 
however,  were  much  out  of  their  original  place,  perhaps  owing 
to  the  influence  of  earthquakes.  The  pillars  were  not  long, 
but  of  considerable  diameter ;  and  there  were  found,  as  in  a 
church  of  Tyre,  only  on  a  larger  scale,  the  double  columns, 
otherwise  unknown  in  Palestine,  standing  on  a  double  pedestal, 
but  hewn  out  of  a  single  block.  Wilson  saw  pieces  of  marble 
not  indigenous  to  the  place,  scattered  among  the  ruins.  Some 
masses  of  stone,  nine  feet  long  and  half  as  wide,  and  orna¬ 
mented  with  sculpture,  may  have  served  as  door-posts,  and  as 
coverings  of  the  gates  of  a  temple  or  church,  possibly  as 
sarcophagi.  The  whole  place,  taken  in  connection  with  the 
great  devastation  of  the  fairest  decorations  by  the  tooth  of  time, 
dashed  by  the  ripples  of  the  lake,  and  left  to  no  other  com- 

1  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  pp.  407-411  ;  Wilson,  Lands ,  etc.,  ii.  pp. 

2  Pococke,  ii.  p.  106. 

VOL.  1?. 




panionship  than  that  of  the  waters,  is  calculated  to  awaken  the 
saddest  feelings  in  the  mind  of  the  traveller. 

Robinson,  who,  on  grounds  which  seemed  to  him  to  justify 
him,  did  not  accept  the  identity  of  the  Khan  Minyeh  with 
the  ancient  Bethsaida,  but,  on  the  contrary,  held  that  place 
to  be  the  site  of  the  ancient  Capernaum,  was  unable  to 
assign  to  Tell  Hum  the  name  of  any  place  known  historically 
to  us.  Most  travellers  have  agreed,  however,  that  Tell  Hum 
was  the  ancient  Capernaum,  although  opinions  vary  exceed¬ 
ingly  regarding  the  situation  of  the  three  cities  on  which 
Jesus  pronounced  the  curse  recorded  in  Matt.  xi.  21-23 — 
Bethsaida,  Chorazin,  and  Capernaum — there  being  no  marked 
local  memorial  of  them.  Yet  Robinson  thinks  that  such  a 
memorial  exists  in  the  name  of  the  spring  Kafer  Naum,  which, 
according  to  Josephus,  watered  the  lovely  plain  Gennesar: 
the  name  signifies  etymologically  Nahum’s  Village.  But  as 
this  could  not  have  been  originally  the  appellation  of  a  spring, 
Robinson  conjectured  that  it  must  have  been  connected  with  a 
town  or  hamlet  Ivins;  in  the  immediate  neighbourhood.  The 
spring  itself  seemed  to  him  to  be  one  of  the  most  profuse,  and  the 
most  abundantly  supplied  with  fish,  to  be  found  in  the  whole 
plain  of  Gennesaret ;  and  Josephus  says  of  it,  that  some  called 
it  the  Vena  Nili,  since  it  produces  a  fish  like  the  coracinus , 
found  in  the  lake  near  Alexandria.  There  seemed  to  Robin¬ 
son  to  be  reasons  enough  for  believing  that  the  ruins  on  the 
knoll  near  by,  although  they  do  not  seem  to  be  very  ancient, 
if  not  the  site  of  the  khan  itself,  are  connected  with  the  site 
of  the  ancient  city  of  Capernaum.  He  is  not  the  first  who 
lias  taken  this  ground,  for  Quaresmius  had  no  doubt  that  the 
Khan  Minyeh  stands  where  Capernaum  once  stood.  But,  on 
the  other  hand,  most  travellers  who  have  paid  attention  to 
the  question — Marin  Sanudo,  Rau,  Pococke,1  and  Burckhardt 
— have  held  that  Tell  Hum  occupies  the  site  of  the  ancient 
city  of  which  we  speak, — an  opinion  which  Dr  Wilson,  a 
more  recent  explorer,  has  placed  on  grounds  of  the  highest 
degree  of  probability.  The  main  reasons  which  Dr  Wilson2 
adduces  will  appear  in  what  follows.  The  name  of  the  spring 
Capharnaumdoes  not  necessarily  imply  that  the  town  of  the  same 

1  Pococke,  ii.  p.  105  ;  Burckhardt,  Gesenius’  ed.  ii.  p.  558. 

2  Wilson,  Lands  of  the  Bible ,  ii.  pp.  138-149. 



name  lay  close  beside  it :  nay,  in  Palestine,  instances  where  the 
village  and  the  spring  bearing  the  same  name  are  a  consider¬ 
able  way  apart  are  very  common.  Besides,  it  cannot  be  that 
Josephus  refers  to  the  Ain  Tin  near  the  Khan  Minyeh  when 
he  says  that  the  spring  which  he  mentions  watered  the  whole 
plain  of  Gennesaret :  it  lies  on  the  north-east  extremity ;  and 
the  whole  district  cannot  be  said  to  be  so  largely  indebted  to 
it  as  to  the  large  round  enclosed  spring  in  the  middle  of  the 
plain,  the  Ain^el  Mudauwarah,  or  as  to  the  waters  which  pour 
through  the  Wadi  Rabadiyali,  and  are  then  carried  to  almost 
every  part  of  Gennesaret. 

The  allusion  in  Matt.  iv.  13,  u  Jesus  came  and  dwelt  in 
Capernaum,  which  is  upon  the  sea-coast,  in  the  borders  of 
Zebulon  and  Nephthalim,”  is  very  definite,  but  unfortunately 
the  precise  location  of  the  border  of  those  two  tribes  is  unknown 
to  us.  Pococke’s  conjecture  that  the  Wadi  Lymun  forms  the 
boundary  is  mere  hypothesis,  and  deserves  no  serious  considera¬ 
tion.  The  name  Capernaum  does  not  appear  at  all  in  the  Old 

A  place  of  the  name  Capernaum  is  mentioned  but  once  by 
Josephus;  but  that  single  allusion  makes  it  seem  more  probable 
that  the  place  was  where  Tell  Hum  now  is,  than  where  the 
Khan  Minyeh  lies.  In  the  battle  which  Josephus  waged  with 
the  Romans  at  the  entrance  of  the  Jordan  into  Lake  Tiberias, 
he  writes  that  he  should  have  gained  the  victory  had  his  horse 
not  fallen  into  the  morass,  and  he  himself  been  wounded.  He 
was  at  once  carried  by  his  men  to  a  place  called  Cepharnome, 
where  he  lay  in  a  feverish  state  for  a  day,  while  his  followers 
pursued  the  enemy.  When  they  returned  in  the  evening,  at 
the  instigation  of  his  physicians,  he  was  carried  during  the 
night  to  Tarichaea,  south  of  Tiberias.  But  is  it  not  natural  to 
suppose  that  the  wounded  men  w?ould  be  carried  to  the  place 
called  Tell  Hum,  which  was  but  about  an  hour’s  distance  from 
the  battle-field,  instead  of  more  than  twice  that  distance  to  the 
site  of  Khan  Minyeh?  The  two  names,  the  Capharnome  of 
Josephus  and  the  Capharnaum  of  the  New  Testament,  are 
very  similar :  Reland  has  shown  that  Caphar  readily  passes 
into  the  form  Caper,  and  in  one  edition  of  the  Jewish  historian 
we  have  the  reading  Kacpapvaovp,  instead  of  Kecpaprcojur] ;  they 
both  unquestionably  indicate  the  same  place. 



From  the  account  given  in  John  vi.  3,  and  17—21,  of  the 
miraculous  feeding  the  five  thousand,  which,  as  we  have  already 
seen,  took  place  on  the  north-east  side  of  the  lake  on  the  moun¬ 
tain  near  Julias  Bethsaida,  it  appears  that  Capernaum  was  not 
far  from  there,  since  the  people  hastened  to  meet  the  Saviour, 
and  do  not  seem  to  have  taken  a  lon£  detour  around  the  head 
of  the  lake  to  come  to  the  place  where  he  was.  In  Mark  vi.  33 
we  are  told  that  they  u  ran  afoot  ”  to  meet  him,  and  that  their 
speed  was  so  great,  in  fact,  that  they  even  anticipated  his  own 
arrival,  as  we  learn  from  Luke  ix.  10  and  Matt.  xiv.  13 :  this 
is  much  more  probable  if  they  started  from  Tell  Hum  than 
from  the  Khan  Minyeh.  These  reasons,  taken  together,  seem 
to  outweigh  the  argument  which  is  drawn  from  the  probable 
contiguity  of  a  spring  which  bears  the  name  of  a  village 
(Kaphar  Nahum,  the  hamlet  of  Nahum),  and  that  of  the 
village  itself.  According  to  the  view  of  Rodiger 1  the  philolo¬ 
gist,  the  word  Tell,  i.e.  Hill,  is  often  interchanged  with  Caphar, 
i.e.  hamlet ;  and  if  that  were  the  case  in  this  instance,  and  if 
the  word  Nahum  merely  lost  the  first  syllable,  we  have  left  the 
name  which  is  given  to  the  place  to-day,  namely  Tell  Hum. 
Rodiger  states  that  the  etymological  derivation  sometimes  given 
to  the  word  Hum  in  this  connection,  namely  “  drove  of  camels,” 
is  not  correct,  since  it  should  be  written  haum ,  and  not  hum. 
The  passage  which  Robinson  cites  from  Arculfus,  substantiating, 
as  he  thinks,  the  identity  of  Capernaum  with  the  Khan  Minyeh, 
and  which  Reland  had  already  quoted  in  full,  Wilson  thinks 
applies  more  strictly  to  Tell  Hum,  as  the  lake  must  lie  south¬ 
ward  from  Capernaum,  while  it  is  at  the  east  of  Khan  Minyeh. 
Arculfus  was  not  at  the  spot  itself ;  he  only  describes  what 
he  could  see  from  the  Mo  ns  Beatitudinis ,  or  Kurun  Hattin. 
From  the  position  where  he  stood,  Capernaum  seemed  to  be 
surrounded  by  no  wall,  but  to  lie  on  a  narrow  strip  of  shore 
between  the  mountain  on  the  north  and  the  lake  on  the  south 
side,  and  itself  extending  from  east  to  w'est  (quae,  Capharnaum 
scil.  murum  non  habens  anmisto  inter  montem  et  stannum  co- 
artata  spatio  per  illam  maritimam  oram  longo  tramite  protendi- 
tur,  montem  aquilonali  plaga,  lacum  vero  ab  australi,  habens,  ab 
occasu  in  ortum  extensa  dirigitur).  Robinson’s  objection,  that 
the  gently  rising  hill  behind  Tell  Hum  is  hardly  important 
1  Rodiger,  Rec.  in  Allgemein.  Hall.  Lit.  Z.  1842,  April,  p.  581. 



enough  to  be  dignified  by  the  name  of  mountain,  is  removed 
by  the  consideration  that  Arculfus’  view  was  a  distant  one,  and 
from  a  point  where  the  background  appeared  to  form  part  of  a 
mountain  ridge.  Indeed,  the  very  cautious  Reland  founds  upon 
this  quotation  the  conviction  that  Capernaum  lay  by  the  shores 
of  the  lake,  very  near  the  entrance  of  the  Jordan.  Turner 
remarks  in  his  volume  of  travels,  that  Burckhardt1  once  spoke 
with  him  about  a  place  lying  in  the  neighbourhood  under  con¬ 
sideration,  bearing  the  name  Kafer  Naym;  but  nothing  further 
is  known  about  such  a  spot,  and  Burckhardt  makes  no  allusion 
to  it  in  his  work. 

On  the  grounds  which  have  been  given  in  the  preceding 
pages,  it  seems  to  be  the  least  contradictory  to  the  statements 
of  those  most  qualified  to  make  them,  and  to  be  in  itself  the 
most  probable,  that  Bethsaida  and  Chorazin2  are  to  be  looked 
for  at  the  neighbouring  points  now  known  as  Ain  Minyeh  and 
Ain  et  Tabighah,  while  Capernaum  is  represented  by  the 
modern  Tell  Hum,  at  most  an  hour  and  a  half’s  distance  from 
Bethsaida.  South  of  the  Khan  Minyeh,  as  far  as  Mejel,  that 
is,  between  the  ancient  Bethsaida  and  Magdala,  lies  the  fertile 
plain  of  Gennesaret :  an  hour’s  distance  north-east  of  Tell  Hum 
or  Capernaum,  the  Jordan  flows  into  the  Sea  of  Galilee.  Still 
we  can  only  say  that  this  is  the  most  probable  solution  of  the 
difficulties  in  the  way ;  we  can  by  no  means  insist  that  the 
matter  is  placed  beyond  a  doubt.  Yet  in  weighing  this  question, 
the  opinion  of  some  of  the  older  pilgrims,3  who  have  not  hesi¬ 
tated  to  speak  very  decisively,  is  not  to  be  very  highly  valued  ; 
for  some,  Felix  Fabri  and  von  Breydenbach,  never  visited  the 
spot.4  L.  de  Suchen,  writing  in  the  middle  of  the  fourteenth 
century,  says,  without  any  attempt  to  speculate  on  the  matter, 
that  these  places  are  such  a  desolation,  that  it  is  impossible  to 
tell  where  they  lay.  According  to  Epiphanius,  Constantine 

1  W.  Turner,  Journal ,  vol.  ii.  p.  143. 

2  Captain  Wilson  has  ascertained,  during  his  recent  explorations,  that 
the  ruins  of  Chorazin  at  Kerazeh  are  far  more  important  than  was  pre¬ 
viously  suspected  :  he  states  that  they  cover  a  much  larger  extent  of 
ground  than  Tel  Hum,  and  that  many  of  the  buildings  are  in  an  almost 
perfect  state,  excepting  as  regards  the  roofs. — Ed. 

3  Set.  Willibaldi  Vita ,  in  Mabillon,  Acta  Set.  T.  ii.  fol.  374,  375. 

4  Fel.  Fabri,  Evagatorium ,  ed.  Hassler,  vol.  ii.  p.  45  ;  de  Breydenbach, 
ed.  Spirens,  1502,  fol.  26c. 



gave  a  certain  Josephus  the  privilege  of  building  at  Caper¬ 
naum  (where  the  Jews  had  before  been  allowed  to  live)  a 
Christian  church,  at  the  same  time  as  in  Tiberias  and  in  Dio 
Caesarea.  It  may  have  been  this  church  which  Antoninus 
Martyr,1  some  time  prior  to  the  year  600,  went  from-  Tiberias 
to  visit.  Is  it  not  probable  that  the  ruins  of  the  extensive  and 
highly  ornamented  building  at  Tell  Hum,  already  referred  to, 
may  be  the  relics  of  that  Basilica  ?  The  architecture  is  not 
opposed  to  such  a  conjecture.2 

For  an  interesting  discussion  on  the  subject  of  the  sites  of 
Bethsaida,  Chorazin,  and  Capernaum,  see  extract  in  Appendix 
from  Tristram’s  Land  of  Israel. — Ed.] 



II.  The  south  and  south-east  side  of  the  Lake. 

Here,  as  in  so  many  other  parts  of  the  Holy  Land,  Seetzen3 
leads  the  way  into  new  and  unexplored  regions.  He  left 
Tiberias  on  the  6th  of  February  1806,  in  order  to  examine  the 
country  around  the  southern  and  south-east  parts  of  the  Sea 
of  Tiberias,  and  rectify  the  errors  which  had  crept  into  the 
maps  of  that  district.  At  the  southern  extremity  of  the  lake 
he  discovered  rubbish  and  relics  of  walls,  which  he  concluded 
once  belonged  to  the  city  of  Tarichsea,  a  place  which  sheltered 
the  Jews  after  Tiberias  had  been  surrendered  to  the  Homans, 
and  which  held  out  against  Titus  and  Vespasian.  The  Homan 
emperor  determined  to  destroy  it,  in  order  that  the  war  should 
not  be  protracted  longer  in  that  quarter.  The  place  was 
strongly  protected ;  and  in  the  waters  before  it  there  was  a 
large  number  of  the  boats,  which  had  been  made  ready,  in  case 
it  was  necessary  to  fly,  and  escape  to  other  strongholds  beyond 
the  lake.  Titus  encountered  a  small  party  of  the  Jews  without 
the  walls,  and  engaged  them  :  they  fell  back  to  the  city ;  and 

1  Itinerar.  B.  Anton.  Plac .,  in  Ugolini,  Thes.  vii.  fol.  mccix. 

2  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  p.  406.  See  also  Wilson,  Lands ,  etc.,  ii. 
p.  150. 

3  Seetzen,  Mon.  Corresp.  xviii.  pp.  350-354. 



while  the  gates  were  opened  for  them  to  enter,  the  Romans  took 
advantage  of  the  time  and  pressed  in,  and  effected  fearful  car¬ 
nage.  Those  of  the  inhabitants  who  were  spared  betook  them¬ 
selves  to  the  boats ;  but  even  in  this  their  purpose  was  defeated. 
Vespasian  caused  a  number  of  fishing-boats  to  be  made  ready  at 
once,  and  pursued  the  Jews  over  the  waters  of  the  lake,  com¬ 
mitting  more  bloodshed  there,  if  possible,  than  he  had  done 
before  upon  the  land.  The  number  of  captives  afterwards 
made  slaves  is  reported  to  have  been  30,000 ;  and  six  thousand 
ablebodied  men  of  the  number  are  reported  to  have  been  em¬ 
ployed  on  the  excavation  of  a  canal  through  the  Isthmus  of 
Corinth.  Those  who  escaped  became  freebooters  on  the  east 
side  of  the  Jordan,  or  betook  themselves  to  the  fortifications 
of  Gamala,  where  they  underwent  a  subsequent  siege.  The 
situation  of  Tarichsea  (from  rapqyo?,  a  place  where  fish  is 
salted)  Seetzen  thought  he  had  discovered,  from  the  existence 
of  a  layer  of  salt  covering  the  ground  of  a  place  where  the 
desolation  seemed  to  be  perfect,  and  which  bore  the  name 
Ard  el  Malahha,  the  place  of  salt.  According  to  Josephus, 
Tarichsea  lay  upon  an  elevation  :  it  cannot  therefore,  in  Burck- 
hardt’s1  opinion,  be  looked  for  on  the  site  of  the  present  village  of 
Szemmak,  or  on  the  east  side  of  the  Jordan.  But  Banks  dis¬ 
covered,  at  the  southern  extremity  of  the  lake,  between  the 
shore  line  and  the  mountains,  the  remains  of  an  aqueduct2  and 
of  walls,  which  he  thinks  belonged  to  the  ancient  city  of  which 
we  are  now  speaking,  and  which  seems  to  have  lain  in  part 
upon  two  hills,  one  of  which  is  close  to  the  outlet  of  the  lake. 
This  part  of  the  old  town  seems  to  have  been  surrounded  by 
ditches,,  which  are  now  filled  with  water  when  the  Jordan  is 
high.  It  is  an  hour’s  walk,  according  to  Wilson,  from  the 
baths  of  Tiberias  to  the  site  of  Tarichsea.  A  quarter  of  an 
hour’s  distance  south-east  from  the  lake  lies  the  miserable 
village  of  Kerak,3  inhabited  by  a  small  number  of  fellahin,  or 
cultivators  of  the  arable  land  in  that  neighbourhood.  The 
southern  shore  of  the  lake  here  begins  to  run,  at  a  height  of 
from  ten  to  forty  feet  above  the  level  of  the  water,  though 
without  a  steep  slope  :  along  the  margin  there  is  a  narrow 
and  rough  path,  which  on  the  east  side  changes  to  a  strip  of 

1  Burckhardt,  Trav.  p.  275.  2  Irby  and  Mangles,  Trav.  p.  300. 

3  Wilson,  Lands  of  the  Bible ,  ii.  pp.  124-129. 



sand.  The  water  of  the  Jordan,  which  passes  at  the  outlet 
under  the  shade  of  a  long  and  dense  thicket  of  oleanders  on  the 
west  side,  is  not  dark  and  muddy,  as  it  is  before  it  enters  the 
lake  :  it  has  lost  its  sediment,  and  become  as  clear  as  crystal. 
The  river  is  about  thirty  feet  wide,  and  six  feet  deep  in  the 
middle.  It  begins  its  series  of  remarkable  windings  not  far 
from  the  ruins  of  the  first  ancient  bridge.  A  hundred  paces 
below  this  one,  which  is  traced  with  some  difficulty,  there  are 
the  far  more  discernible  remains  of  a  Roman  bridge  of  ten 
arches.1  Wilson  calls  it  Kanaiterah.  From  it  there  is  a  much 
finer  view  of  the  whole  lake  than  is  gained  from  the  northern 
extremity,  since  the  mountains  on  the  east  side  tower  up  very 
prominently.  The  bridge  can  no  longer  be  used ;  and  when 
Dr  Barth2  visited  it,  he  found  that  the  water  rushed  so  vehe¬ 
mently  between  the  arches,  as  to  make  it  necessary  to  exercise 
the  greatest  care  in  crossing  the  river. 

The  only  travellers  who  have  penetrated  the  country  east 
of  the  Sea  of  Tiberias  are  Seetzen  and  Burckhardt,  although 
it  must  be  confessed  that  they  were  able  to  make  no  thorough 
exploration,  and  only  reached  one  or  two  places  of  interest. 

Seetzen  went  first  down  the  broad  valley  of  the  Jordan,  the 

*/  y 

•  Ghor,  which,  in  consequence  of  the  steep  sides  of  the  mountains 
on  both  sides,  he  likens  to  the  vale  of  Bkaa,  although  there  is 
very  little  of  the  majesty  of  the  mighty  Lebanon  and  Anti- 
Lebanon  ranges  to  be  seen  here.  lie  passed  by  the  old  Roman 
bridge  which  spanned  the  Jordan,  and  in  a  few  hours  came  to 
a  bridge  of  five  arches  which  crossed  its  first  eastern  tributary, 
the  Sheriat  Manadra.  A  half-hour  farther  on  he  reached  the 
second  bridge  over  the  Jordan,  if  Kanaiterah  be  reckoned  the 
first,  called  Jssir  el  Medjamea,  at  whose  western  extremity 
there  was  a  khan  with  a  small  garrison.  From  this  bridge  he 
turned  back,  having  attained  one  object  of  his  mission,  which 
was  to  learn  whether  the  Sheriat  Manadra  (Hieromax,  Yarmuk) 
flows  directly  into  the  lake,  as  had  been  supposed,  or  into  the 

The  next  day  he  entered  the  high  land  of  Jolan  on  the 
east  side  of  the  lake,  and  climbed  a  rocky  mountain,  upon 
whose  summit  was  the  deserted  Khan  el  Akabeh  Phik,  a 

1  Irby  and  Mangles,  l.c.  p.  301. 

2  Dr  H.  Barth,  Tagebucli ,  1847,  its. 



locality  which  seemed  to  him  to  correspond  to  Josephus’  de¬ 
scription  of  the  fortress  of  Gamala,  one  of  the  last  places  of 
refuge  for  the  flying  Jews.  Here,  in  the  mountain  fastness 
which  was  called  Gamala,  from  a  fancied  resemblance  to  a 
camel’s  hump,  they  defended  themselves  for  seven  months 
against  the  legions  of  Titus  and  Vespasian,  but  were  at  last 
compelled  to  surrender.  Hunger  and  the  ferocity  of  the 
Roman  soldiery  spared,  it  is  said,  but  two  of  the  whole  number 
who  had  found  shelter  there. 

Farther  north,  about  opposite  the  middle  point  of  the 
eastern  coast  of  the  lake,  Seetzen  reached  the  Phik  or  Fik 
itself  (the  Feik  of  Burckhardt),  only  two  hours  south-east  of 
the  place  where  the  blind  sheikh  lived  whom  he  had  visited 
before,  as  described  on  a  preceding  page.  He  thus  accom¬ 
plished,  though  not  in  the  manner  he  expected,  his  plan  of 
passing  around  the  lake,  and  exploring  its  whole  eastern  shore. 
Of  the  remains  of  three  of  the  cities  which  once  belonged  to 
the  Decapolis — Hippos,  Capitolias,  and  Pella — he  could  gain 
no  information.  He  purposed  to  go  from  Phik  to  the  ruins  of 
Mkes  (Om  Keis)  on  the  southern  side  of  the  Sheriat  Manadra, 
but  could  find  no  guide  to  show  him  the  way  thither :  the 
Amatlia  (hot  baths),  three  hours  from  Phik  in  the  Valley  of 
Manadra,  was  known  to  the  guides,  but  for  fear  of  the  wild 
Beduins  no  one  ventured  to  conduct  him  thither.  An  hour’s 
distance  wrest  of  Phik,  on  the  shore  of  the  lake,  Seetzen  saw 
the  marked  ruins  of  Kalaat  el  Hossn,  lying  on  the  summit  of  a 
mountain  of  dark  brown  basalt ;  it  was  afterwards  considered 
by  Banks  and  Leake  to  be  the  ancient  Gamala.  From  this 
point  Seetzen  proceeded  south-east  to  el-Botthin  (Batanea, 
Bashan),  which  is  separated  by  the  Sheriat  Manadra  from 
northern  Jolan  (Gaulonitis). 

Burckhardt1  entered  the  Glior  on  the  first  week  of  May 
1812,  and  found  the  barley  harvest  almost  ended  at  that  time, 
although  it  was  not  expected  to  be  ready  around  Lake  Huleh 
till  half  a  month  later.  In  the  Ghor  all  the  herbage  was  then 
dry,  while  the  heights  of  the  eastern  Hauran,  which  he  had 
just  left,  w^ere  covered  with  grass.  Without  instituting  any 
measurements,  he  calls  the  Ghor  one  of  the  greatest  depressions 
in  Syria,  and,  like  Seetzen,  compares  its  general  aspect  to  the 

1  Burckhardt,  Trav.  p.  274. 



Bekaa  valley,  between  the  Lebanon  and  the  Anti-Lebanon : 
ranges.  His  keen  perception  did  not  lead  him  astray  when  he 
declared  that  the  depression  was  nearly  as  much  lower  than 
the  general  level  of  Hauran  and  Jaulan,  as  the  average  height 
of  the  line  of  mountains  on  the  east  of  the  Ghor  ;  although,  of 
course,  he  did  not  conjecture  that  it  lay  below  the  level  of  the 
ocean.  The  heat,  which  he  found  here  greater  than  in  any 
other  part  of  Syria,  he  ascribed  to  the  concentration  of  the 
sun’s  rays  between  the  cliffs,  and  to  the  impossibility  of  feeling 
the  cooling  west  winds.  He  confirms  a  remark  made  by 
Yolney,  that  there  are  few  regions  in  the  world  where  more 
marked  contrasts  are  crowded  into  the  space  of  a  few  miles 
than  here,  where  are  to  be  seen  from  the  same  spot  the  per¬ 
petual  snows  of  Hermon,  the  fruitful  plains  of  Jaulan,  with 
their  charming  carpet  of  flowers,  and  the  desolation  of  the 
parched  and  torrid  Ghor. 

At  the  entrance  of  the  Sheriat  Manadra  into  the  Jordan, 
Burckhardt  estimated  the  width  of  the  Ghor  at  one  and  a  half 
to  two  hours  ;  he  followed  the  bushy  banks  of  the  river  to  the 
village  of  Szammagh,  consisting  of  only  forty  huts,  and  standing 
on  a  soil  composed  of  loam  and  masses  of  black  basalt  not 
yet  comminuted.  A  quarter  of  an  hour’s  distance  west  of  the 
village  he  discovered  the  outlet  of  the  lake.1  Between  the 
outlet  and  the  first  bridge  over  the  Jordan  he  heard  that  there 
are  two  fords. 

From  the  village  of  Szammagh,  Burckhardt2  passed  in 
three-quarters  of  an  hour  to  the  height  on  which  stands  the 
Khan  el  Akabe,  near  a  spring  by  which  the  great  road  runs 
from  Hauran  and  the  Ghor  through  Jolan  to  Damascus.  A 
quarter  of  an  hour’s  distance  farther  on  lies  Ain  Akabe,  a 
much  larger  spring ;  and  still  another  quarter  of  an  hour  away 
the  top  of  the  ridge  is  attained.  Then  follows  a  level  road  of 
an  hour  and  three-quarters,  in  order  to  reach  the  Feik  of 
Burckhardt,  or  Phik  of  Seetzen :  it  is  about  four  and  a  half 
hours  distant  from  the  village  of  Szammagh. 

Nearer  the  lake,  and  only  an  hour  east  of  the  last-named 
village,  lies  the  solitary  village  Cherbit  Szammera,  containing 
some  ruins  of  ancient  buildings.  Lying  on  the  east  side  of  the 

1  Burckhardt,  Gesemus’  ed.  i.  p.  433. 

2  Burckhardt,  Trav.  p.  278. 



Sea  of  Tiberias,  it  seemed  to  Burckliardt  to  correspond  with 
what  would  be  the  probable  situation  of  Hippos,  regarding 
which  neither  Josephus  nor  Jerome  have  given  us  clear  infor¬ 
mation.  The  former  merely  says  that  it  was  situated  in  the 
district  of  Hippene,  which  was  on  the  eastern  border  of  Galilee, 
and  probably  to  be  reached  by  crossing  Lake  Tiberias.  To  the 
north,  along  the  sea-coast,  Burckhardt  saw  the  locations  of  two 
deserted  places,  Doeyrayan  and  Tell  Ham.  Three-quarters  of 
an  hour  north  of  the  Khan  el  Akaba  he  saw  the  half-ruined 
yet  still  inhabited  village  of  Kefr  Hareb.  Seetzen’s  map  gives 
north  and  east  of  Feik  the  names  of  several  ruins,1  showing,  at 
least,  that  this  high  part  of  Jolan  was  not  always  so  desolate  as 
it  is  now. 

The  village  of  Feik,  lying  at  the  commencement  of  one  of 
the  wadis  which  run  westward  to  the  lake,  and  yet  on  land  so 
high  as  to  command  an  extensive  view,  Burckhardt  found  in¬ 
habited  by  two  hundred  families.  A  walk  of  three-quarters  of 
an  hour  leads  from  this  place  to  the  steep  and  solitary  eminence 
on  which  stand  the  extensive  ruins  el-Hossn,  which  Burckhardt 
considered  to  indicate  the  site  of  Argob  or  Regaba  ;  Banks 
and  Leake,  of  Gamala.  I  am  inclined  to  think,  however,  that 
el-Hossn  corresponds  rather  to  Hippos  than  to  Gamala,  which, 
according  to  Josephus,  was  no  solitary  mountain,  but  had 
directly  at  the  back  of  it  a  broad  plain,  on  which  the  approaches 
to  the  city  were  guarded  by  walls  and  ditches  such  as  those 
which  are  suggested  by  Seetzen’s  description  of  the  Khan  el 
Akaba.  Near  Hippos  stood,  we  are  told  by  Eusebius  and 
Jerome,  the  great  castle  of  Apheca,2  which  may  have  been  the 
Aphik  mentioned  in  Judg.  i.  31  as  one  of  the  places  which  the 
tribe  of  Asher  was  never  able  to  overcome  so  far  as  to  drive 
the  original  inhabitants  out. 

From  the  earliest  times  Feik  seems  to  have  played  an  im¬ 
portant  part  as  a  caravan  station  on  the  great  highway  through 
Jolan  to  Damascus.  In  Burckhardt’ s  time  it  was  the  only 
district  east  of  the  lake  which  belonged  to  the  pashalic  of  Akka. 
The  hospitality  of  the  place  this  great  traveller  found  to  be 
something  surprising.  Indeed,  he  says  that  a  traveller  may 
spend  a  whole  month  in  Hauran  and  Jolan  without  paying  a 

1  Burckhardt,  Trav.  p.  279. 

2  In  Onom.  s.v.  'AQexl.  See  Gesenius1  note  to  Burckhardt,  i,  p.  539. 



para  for  his  entertainment,  yet  little  gifts  on  his  part  are  not 
refused.  Around  Feik  Burckhardt  saw  olive  trees  growing, 
showing  that  the  plateau  is  not  too  high  for  them  to  thrive ; 
and  on  the  flat  roofs  of  the  houses  the  people  were  compelled 
to  guard  themselves  from  the  heat  of  the  sun’s  rays  by  means 
of  mats.  Of  ancient  buildings  there  are  but  few  traces,  although 
the  remains  of  two  towers  may  be  seen. 





The  only  road  passing  from  the  east  side  of  Lake  Tiberias 
through  Jolan  is  the  caravan  route  leading  from  Feik  to  Damas¬ 
cus,  nearly  parallel  with  the  Kanneytra  road  at  the  north-east. 

Burckhardt  is  the  only  traveller  who  has  yet  explored  this 
district,  and  his  brief  record  must  be  our  only  guide.  North¬ 
east  of  Feik,  and  on  the  farther  side  of  the  cultivated  district, 
begins  the  modern  Jolan,1  whose  southern  frontier  is  formed 
by  the  Wadi  Hamy  Sakker  and  the  Sheriat.  The  ancient 
Gaulonitis  was  not  so  extensive,  embracing  a  mere  strip  along 
the  eastern  shore  of  Lake  Tiberias  and  the  upper  Jordan.  The 
district  around  Feik  Burckhardt  considered  to  be  the  province 
of  Hippene :  Argob  he  thought  to  be  the  most  northern  tract, 
three  or  four  hours’  distance  from  Feik,  and  closed  by  Jebel 

Burckhardt’s  first  day’s  march  was  from  Feik  to  Nowa  ; 
the  second  carried  him  to  Damascus.  A  half-hour  beyond  the 
starting-place  were  the  ruins  of  Bad  join  el  Abhor,  an  hour’s 
distance  north-east  of  which  was  the  village  of  Jebein,  and 
three-quarters  of  an  hour  to  the  left  the  fallen  village  of  el-Aal, 
lying  on  the  side  of  the  same  Wadi  Semek  or  Szemmak,  in 
which  Seetzen  discovered  the  tent  of  the  blind  sheikh.  On  the 
farther  side  of  the  wadi,  in  which  many  reeds  grow  which  the 
Arabs  use  in  making  mats,  lies  Kaffr  Berdoweil, — a  name  which 
recalls  the  times  of  the  Crusades,  as  it  is  a  corruption  of  Baldwin 
or  Balduin. 

1  Burckhardt,  Trav.  pp.  281-284. 



The  high  plain,  continues,  but  is  uncultivated.  It  yields, 
however,  excellent  pasturage  for  camels  and  neat  cattle.  The 
road  passes  by  Ram,  a  pool  formed  by  the  rains,  and  an  hour 
and  three-quarters  wide,  with  a  spring  near  it.  Two  and  a 
quarter  hours  farther  on  are  the  extensive  ruins  of  the  city  of 
Chastein,  built  of  blocks  of  black  basalt,  with  traces  of  an 
edifice  which  once  must  have  been  attractive.  To  the  left,  two 
and  three-quarter  hours  away,  Burckhardt  saw  Tel  Zechy  ; 
and  an  hour  and  a  half  farther,  Tel  el  Faras  at  the  southern 
extremity  of  Jebel  Heish. 

Three  hours  farther  on  he  descended  from  the  high  land 
into  Wadi  Moakkar,  which  runs  southward  to  the  Sheriat 
Mandara.  To  the  left,  three  and  a  half  hours  away,  he  left 
the  ruined  village  of  el-Ivebur;  and  passing  over  the  Wadi 
Seyde,  Burckhardt  reached  in  three  and  three-quarter  hours 
the  bridge  which  crosses  the  Wady  Hamy  Sakker.  Along  the 
whole  way  he  met  peasants  and  Arabs  on  the  way  to  the  Ghor 
to  gather  in  the  barley  harvest.  From  this  bridge  it  is  but  two 
and  a  half  hours  to  the  Sheriat. 

Four  hours  more  brought  Burckhardt  to  the  spring  Ain 
Keir,  and  a  few  minutes  more  to  Ain  Dekar.  South  of  the 
road  thus  far,  with  the  exception  of  the  village  of  Jebein,  there 
had  been  no  regular  settlement ;  nothing  more  permanent  than 
the  encampments  of  Beduins.  Burckhardt  dined  at  Tfeil, 
which  is  one  of  the  most  important  villages  in  Jolan,  and  has 
a  population  of  eighty  to  a  hundred  families,  who  live  in  the 
half-ruined  houses  of  the  place  :  the  largest  building,  a  mosque, 
seems  once  to  have  been  a  Christian  church. 

After  leaving  Tfeil  the  plain  was  for  the  most  part  covered 
with  fine  fields  of  wheat  and  barley.  A  half-liour’s  distance 
north  of  Tel  Jemera  Burckhardt  saw  Tel  Jabye,  with  a  village 
on  it;  and  one  and  three-quarters  beyond  Tfeil  he  found  Nowa, 
where  he  encamped  for  the  night.  This  is  one  of  the  most 
important  places  in  Jolan,  and  was  once  a  city  a  half-hour  in 
circumference.  Neve  (so  called  in  the  Itin.  Anton .,  and  the 
Nova  of  Abulfeda1)  was  a  Jewish  city  in  the  eparchy  of  Arabia, 
and  is  mentioned  by  Jerome,  although  confounded  by  him  with 
Nineveh.2  According  to  the  Itinerar.  it  lies  thirty-six  Roman 

1  Itin.  Antonin,  ed.  Parthey,  196,  198,  pp.  88,  89. 

2  H.  Reland,  pp.  217,  909,  910  ;  Gesenius,  note  to  Burckhardt,  i.  p.  540. 



miles  from  Capitolias,  on  the  Sheriat  Manadra,  and  sixteen  from 
Gadara,1 — data  which  may  lead  at  some  future  time  to  the  iden¬ 
tification  of  the  former.  Burckhardt  found  here  a  multitude 
of  fallen  private  dwellings,  and  the  remains  of  some  which  were 
used  for  public  purposes :  a  temple,  of  which  a  pillar  still 
remains,  has  been  transformed  into  a  mosque.  At  the  southern 
extremity  of  the  place  stands  a  small  square  massive  structure, 
probably  a  mausoleum ;  and  on  the  north  side  of  the  town  are 
the  remains  of  another  square  but  large  building,  of  which 
nothing  continues  in  a  state  of  completeness  excepting  the 
entrance,  elaborately  adorned  with  sculptures.  There  are 
several  springs  and  cisterns  in  the  city,  and  the  grave  of  a 
Turkish  saint. 

The  second  day’s  march  brought  Burckhardt  to  Damascus, 
as  already  remarked.  Two  hours  north  of  Nowa  lies  the  village 
of  Kosem,  on  the  southern  frontier  of  the  district  of  J edur  or 
Xturgea,  and  on  the  northern  confines  of  Jolan,  though  some 
consider  Nowa  to  be  on  the  boundary..  The  places  passed  after 
that  were  Om  el  Mezabel,  Onhol,  and  the  Tel  el  Hora,  the 
highest  hill  in  the  plateau  of  Hauran  and  Jolan.  Then  fol¬ 
lowed  Semneim  and  Jedye,  where  the  cultivation  was  very 
poor.  All  these  villages  have  pools  or  cisterns  not  unlike  in 
character  the  Lake  Philaa,  which  has  in  another  place  been 
spoken  of  in  connection  with  the  sources  of  the  Jordan. 

Burckhardt  then  passed  Deir  el  Aades,  Tel  Moerad,  Tel 
Shak-hab,  a  village  with  a  small  castle  and  abundant  springs, 
and  War  Ezzaky,  with  its  fallen  Khan  Ezzeiat.  Here  the  mill¬ 
stones  for  the  Damascus  market  are  hewn.  The  road  then 
passed  the  Khan  Denur  and  the  village  of  el-Kessue,  the  latter 
of  which  is  but  three  hours  from  Damascus. 

1  H.  Reland,  Pal.  p.  694. 





WO  efforts  to  navigate  the  waters  of  the  Jordan  have 
been  made  in  rapid  succession  during  the  present 
century;  the  one  undertaken  by  the  English  Lieut. 
Molyneux  in  1847,  and  that  of  the  American  Capt. 
Lynch  in  1848.  The  death  of  the  former  almost  immediately 
after  accomplishing  a  part  of  his  mission,  and  before  he  could 
give  any  special  attention  to  the  Dead  Sea,  has  prevented  our 
knowing  all  that  we  should  wish  to  learn  regarding  the  scientific 
results  of  the  expedition ;  while  there  has  not  come  iilto  my 
hands  the  account  of  the  American  expedition  of  Lynch,1 — a 
document  that  will  be  awaited  with  great  interest.  Molyneux 
has,  however,  left  behind  him  a  valuable  sketch  of  his  explora¬ 
tion  of  the  Jordan,  which,  if  not  so  full  as  could  be  wished, 
gives  a  vivid  picture  of  the  dangers  encountered,  and  of  the 
general  physical  character  of  the  Ghor. 

No  one  has  yet  been  able  to  go  on  foot2  along  the  shore  of 
the  Jordan  between  the  Sea  of  Tiberias  and  the  Dead  Sea;  and 

1  The  account  reached  Prof.  Ritter  in  season  to  be  used  in  his  discussion 
of  the  Dead  Sea,  and  will  there  be  found  fully  cited.  To  supply  the  want 
of  the  earlier  chapters,  I  have  condensed  Lynch’s  account  of  his  voyage 
down  the  lower  Jordan,  and  inserted  it  directly  after  the  compressed 
narrative  of  Molyneux. — Ed. 

2  This  must  now  be  qualified,  since  Lynch  divided  his  party,  some 
taking  the  boats,  and  the  others  forming  a  guard  along  the  shore. — Ed. 



yet,  by  putting  together  the  glimpses  which  have  been  caught 
by  those  who  have  partially  traversed  it,  and  by  comparing 
these  with  the  landscape  as  seen  from  the  river,  we  have  a 
tolerably  complete  picture  of  the  Ghor.  It  is  known  that  two 
at  least  of  the  earlier  pilgrims — Antoninus  Martyr  and  Willi¬ 
bald — together  with  King  Baldwin  I.,  passed  down  the  valley 
of  the  lower  Jordan,  but  they  have  left  us  no  account  of  what 
they  saw  upon  the  way.1 

In  following  Molyneux’ s  narrative,  it  must  be  borne  in 
mind  that  his  expedition  was  undertaken  in  the  driest  time  of 
the  year ;  and  that  during  the  wet  season,  and  with  a  flat  boat 
instead  of  a  ship’s  dingy,  he  might  have  been  able  to  shun 
many  of  the  dangers  and  hardships  which  he  encountered. 

The  upper  portion  of  the  lower  course  has  already  been 
alluded  to  in  my  account  of  the  southern  shore  of  Lake 
Tiberias.  I  have  spoken  of  the  Boman  bridge  with  five  arches, 
which  was  discovered  by  Seetzen  near  the  place  where  the 
Sheriat  Manadra  enters  the  Jordan ;  of  the  faint  traces  of  a 
Roman  bridge  of  ten  arches,  the  Kanneiterah  of  Wilson, 
directly  below  the  outlet  of  the  Sea  of  Tiberias ;  and  also  of 
another  bridge  over  the  Jordan,  two  and  a  half  hours  farther 
south,  the  Jessr  el  Medjomie  of  Burckhardt.  This  preparation 
will  enable  us  the  better  to  enter  upon  the  study  of  the  lower 
course  of  the  sacred  river. 

Molyneux' s  Boat  Exploration2  of  the  Jordan  in  1847. 

First  day.  Aug.  25. — The  river  was  at  first  a  hundred  feet 

broad  and  four  or  five  deep  :  the  first  turning  brought  him  in 

sight  of  a  large  ruined  ridge,  the  arches  of  which  having  all 

fallen,  completely  obstructed  the  passage.  Here  the  difficulties 

commenced  ;  and  for  the  seven  hours  that  the  party  travelled  the 

first  day,  they  scarcely  ever  had  water  enough  to  float  the  boat 

for  any  consecutive  hundred  yards.  Many  of  the  wild  Arabs 

accompanied  them  along  the  banks  of  the  river,  possibly  to 

rejoice  over  or  to  take  advantage  of  any  accident  which  might 

befall  the  boat.  In  many  places  Molyneux  found  the  river 

split  up  into  several  small  streams,  and  consequently  without 

much  water  in  anv  of  them.  About  an  hour  and  a  half  after 


1  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  p.  380. 

2  Molyneux,  Exped.  in  Journ.  of  the  Roy.  Geog.  Soc.  xviii.  p.  108. 



starting  they  came  to  a  full  stop,  and  were  obliged  to  take 
everything  out,  and  carry  the  boat  upwards  of  a  hundred  yards 
over  rocks  and  through  thorny  bushes  ;  and  in  many  other 
places  afterwards  it  was  nearly  as  bad.  The  Ghor  was  here 
about  eight  or  nine  miles  broad ;  and  this  space  is  anything 
but  a  flat — nothing  but  a  continuation  of  bare  hills,  with  yellow 
dried-up  weeds,  which  look,  when  distant,  like  corn  stubbles. 
These  hills,  however,  sink  into  insignificance  when  compared  to 
the  ranges  of  mountains  which  enclose  the  Ghor,  and  it  is 
therefore  only  by  comparison  that  this  part  of  the  Ghor  is 
entitled  to  be  called  a  valley. 

Molyneux  was  surprised  to  find  a  great  number  of  weirs 
running  across  the  river;  but  most  of  them  appeared  to  be 
only  loose  walls  of  stone,  mud,  and  turf,  rising  three  or  four 
feet  above  the  water.  Some  of  them  were  within  less  than  a 
hundred  yards  apart.  These  weirs  turn  the  stream  into  small 
channels,  which  irrigate  the  little  green  patches  on  either  side, 
and  produce  the  scanty  vegetation  on  which  the  Arab  tribes 
subsist.  These  weirs  they  had  generally  to  pull  through  to 
make  a  gap  large  enough  for  the  boat  to  pass ;  and  sometimes 
they  were  obliged  to  build  them  up  again  afterwards,  to  avoid 
having  trouble  with  the  Arabs.  From  the  top  of  one  of  them, 
which  was  of  more  solid  masonry  than  the  rest,  they  had  to 
launch  the  boat.  When  approaching  the  village  of  Sunnnakh, 
they  had  high,  steep,  sandy  cliffs  all  along  the  banks  of  the 
river,  particularly  on  the  left :  the  place  itself  they  found 
perched  upon  the  top  of  a  round  sandy  hill,  and  looking  as  dry 
and  as  miserable  as  the  rest  of  the  country.  Here  he  encoun¬ 
tered  an  Arab  sheikh,  who  claimed  to  have  the  control  of  the 
territory  for  two  days’  march  down  the  river  :  he  demanded  six 
hundred  piastres  for  the  privilege  of  passing  through  the 
district ;  but  as  Molyneux  refused  to  give  more  than  two 
hundred,  he  at  last  accepted  that,  and  promised  to  give  his 
protection.  lie  proved  to  belong  to  the  powerful  tribe  of 
Beni  Sakkers,  who  inhabit  a  large  portion  of  the  Ghor. 

After  passing  the  village  of  Abadiyeh,  and  going  a  little 
farther,  Molyneux  reached  the  ruins  of  el-Buk’ah,  where  he 
determined  to  spend  the  night.  The  place  itself  consisted  of 
nothing  more  than  the  ruins  of  two  villages,  one  on  each  side 
of  the  river;  the  mere  walls  remained.  Just  above  there  was 

YOL,  II. 




a  small  waterfall,  down  which  it  was  necessary  to  ease  the 

Second  day.1 — The  river  was  so  shallow  below  el-Buk’ah, 
that  the  boat  was  seriously  injured  by  the  stones,  and  at 
length  Molyneux  was  compelled  to  make  it  be  carried  by  the 
camels.  From  a  hill  above  the  road  which  the  party  then  took 
they  had  a  fine  view  of  the  whole  valley,  with  its  many  Arab 
encampments,  all  made  of  the  common  coarse  black  camel-hair 
cloth.  Very  large  herds  of  camels  were  to  be  seen  in  every 
direction ,  stalking  about  upon  the  apparently  barren  hills  in 
search  of  food.  The  Jordan  had  split  into  two  streams  of 
about  equal  size  after  leaving  el-Buk’ah;  and  its  winding 
course,  which  was  marked  by  luxuriant  vegetation,  looked  like 
a  gigantic  serpent  twisting  down  the  valley.  After  forming 
an  island  of  an  oval  form,  and  about  five  or  six  miles  in  circum¬ 
ference,  the  two  branches  of  the  Jordan  again  unite  immediately 
above  an  old,  curiously-formed  bridge.  This  bridge  [the  Jessr 
Medjamie  of  Burckhardt],  which  is  still  in  such  good  preserva¬ 
tion  that  the  road  passes  over  it,  consists  of  one  large,  pointed 
arch  in  the  centre,  with  two  smaller  ones  on  either  side,  and 
over  the  latter  there  are  three  or  four  small  arches  of  the  same 
shape,  which  go  quite  through  the  masonry.  On  the  western 
bank,  opposite  the  end  of  the  bridge,  there  is  a  large  ruined 
building  of  a  square  form,  and  not  less  than  two  hundred  feet 
each  way :  it  had  been  well  built,  and  even  now  has  the 
remains  of  a  fine  massive  gateway  composed  of  very  large 
stones.  The  walls  of  this  quadrangle  were  high  and  loopholed, 
and  had  several  well-built  towers,  some  of  which  had  windows, 
and  in  the  centre  stood  a  large  cistern.  The  bridge  wras  built 
of  a  very  dark  stone  abutting  against  the  solid  rock.  *  Here 
they  launched  the  boat  again,  and  found  a  great  improvement 
in  the  depth  of  the  water. 

Molyneux  found  the  country  along  the  banks  of  the  Jordan 
very  populous,  and  became  convinced  that  it  would  have  been 
utterly  impossible  to  have  succeeded  in  going  down  the  river  in 
opposition  to  the  Arabs.  The  Glior  now  began  to  wear  a  much 
better  and  more  fertile  aspect.  It  appears  to  be  composed  of 
two  different  platforms  :  the  upper  one  on  either  side  projects 
from  the  foot  of  the  hills  which  form  the  great  valley,  and  is 

1  Molyneux,  l.c.  Journ.  xviii.  p.  111. 



tolerably  level,  but  barren  and  uncultivated.  It  then  falls 
away  in  the  form  of  rounded  sand-hills  or  whitish  perpendicular 
cliffs,  which  enclose  this  smaller  valley ;  but  generally  it  winds 
in  the  most  tortuous  manner  between  them.  In  many  places 
these  cliffs  are  like  walls,  and  entirely  preclude  the  possibility 
of  communication  between  the  river  and  the  cattle  above.  At 
this  part  of  the  Jordan  the  lower  plain  seems  to  be  from  one 
and  a  half  to  two  miles  broad,  and  so  full  of  the  most  rank  and 
luxuriant  vegetation,  like  a  jungle,  that  in  a  few  spots  only 
can  anything  approach  its  banks.  Some  of  the  bushes  and 
ferns  are  very  beautiful.  There  was  abundance  of  game  seen 
on  the  way,  but  Molyneux  had  no  opportunity  to  observe  it, 
the  trouble  encountered  with  the  Arabs  was  so  great.  The 
altercations  which  arose  harassed  him  incessantly,  not  to  speak 
of  the  continued  danger  of  an  attack.  The  seven  loaded 
barrels  which  he  carried  around  his  own  person  secured  a 
tolerable  degree  of  respect,  but  the  worry  of  the  day  was 
enough,  as  he  says,  to  drive  a  reasonable  person  mad.  The 
tribe  which  undertook  to  be  his  first  escort,  the  Beni-Sakkers, 
were  carrying  on  war  with  the  Anizees,  and  it  was  from  these 
that  an  assault  was  at  any  moment  to  be  expected.  Molyneux 
makes  no  mention  of  the  windings  of  the  river,  excepting  to  say 
that  it  would  be  quite  impossible  to  give  any  account  of  the 
various  turnings  of  the  Jordan  in  its  way  from  the  Lake  of 
Tiberias  to  the  Dead  Sea. 

Third  day.1 — The  place  where  the  party  had  bivouacked 
was  called  Attah.  There  the  lower  valley,  through  which  the 
river  more  immediately  runs,  breaks  out  into  a  magnificent 
plain,  extending  from  the  foot  of  the  hills  on  either  side  across 
the  Ghor,  but  with  a  high  slip  on  the  western  side,  where  the 
large  Arab  village  of  Beisan  stands.  The  party  was  soon 
obliged  to  mount  to  the  top  of  the  high  western  ridge,  as  they 
passed  in  sight  of  Beisan.  The  country  there  appeared  very 
different  from  that  which  they  had  passed  since  leaving  Lake 
Tiberias.  The  ground  abreast  of  Beisan,  and  as  far  westward 
as  Molyneux  could  see,  was  fertile,  well  watered,  and  cultivated, 
chiefly  with  Indian  corn.  It  is  also  thickly  inhabited  :  hundreds 
of  small  sheds  could  be  seen  studding  the  plain,  with  men 
watching  the  crops,  and  slinging  stones  to  keep  off  the  birds. 

1  Molyneux,  Exped.  l.c.  p.  114. 



Molyneux  thought  the  view  from  this  point  over  the  valley 
of  the  Jordan  one  of  the  finest  things  he  had  seen :  an 
abundant  vegetation  extending  up  the  slopes  of  the  eastern 
hills,  which  are  crowned  with  trees  up  to  the  summit,  and 
everything  growing  in  the  wildest  luxuriance ;  while  on  the 
western  side,  the  higher  steppe  breaks  down  into  steep  sand¬ 
hills  or  whitish  perpendicular  cliffs,  with  only  here  and  there 
the  means  of  ascent.  The  river,  as  usual,  winds  very  much, 
with  banks  about  twenty  feet  in  height,  of  brown  clayey  soil, 
somewhat  resembling  those  of  the  Thames,  and  for  some 
distance  on  either  side  a  thick  and  almost  impenetrable  jungle. 

They  made  but  a  short  journey  on  this  day,  as  it  was  neces¬ 
sary  to  send  to  Beisan  to  get  barley  for  the  horses  and  food  for 
the  Arabs:  the  tent  was  pitched  on  the  small  island  of  el-Kerma, 
on  the  western  side  of  the  river.  That  day  did  not  pass  with¬ 
out  more  serious  trouble  with  the  Arabs :  the  difficulties  were 
those  experienced  in  passing  through  an  enemy’s  country,  in 
addition  to  the  great  labours  inseparable  from  the  low  state  of 
water  in  the  river,  and  the  difficulty  of  getting  supplies  of  food. 
The  heat  was  insupportably  hot — 108°  in  the  tent;  and  the 
commander  of  the  expedition  here  began  to  give  signs  of  yield¬ 
ing  to  its  influence.  The  water  sufficed,  however,  to  float  the 
boat,  but  there  were  hundreds  of  places  where  a  man  could 
leap  across  from  stone  to  stone  without  wetting  his  feet.  The 
party  procured  with  difficulty  some  flour  and  melons  from 
Beisan ;  but  the  Beduins  generally  will  sell  nothing :  indeed, 
they  appear  to  have  but  little  to  spare,  rich  as  the  country 
appears  to  be.  From  seeing  a  quantity  of  deposit  in  the  plain 
of  the  Jordan,  and  the  marks  of  water  in  various  places  at  a 
distance  from  the  river,  it  was  evident  that  the  Jordan  widely 
overflows  its  banks :  the  sheikh  informed  Molyneux  that  in 
winter  it  is  occasionally  half  an  hour  across,  which  accounts 
for  the  luxurious  vegetation  in  this  part  of  the  Ghor.1 

Fourth  day.2 — This  night  a  dew  fell  so  heavy  that  the 
leader  of  the  expedition  woke  up  wet  through.  The  river  con¬ 
tinued  to  be  good  for  the  boat,  but  there  was  no  good  road  for 
the  camels.  The  country  through  the  early  part  of  the  day 
was  very  fine,  well  watered,  and  fertile :  the  river  ran  through 

1  See  Burckhardt,  Trav.  p.  842. 

2  Molyneux,  Exped.  l.c.  xviii.  p.  116. 



the  best  part  of  the  valley :  very  soon  the  higher  terraces  on 
either  side  began  to  close  in,  and  to  narrow  the  fertile  space 
below ;  the  hills  became  irregular,  and  only  partly  cultivated ; 
and  by  degrees  the  whole  Ghor  resumed  its  original  form, 
entirely  different  from  the  neighbourhood  of  Beisan.  The 
zig-zag  course  of  the  river  was  prettily  marked  by  lines  of  green 
foliage  on  its  banks,  as  it  veered  from  the  cliffs  on  one  side  to 
those  on  the  other. 

This  day  did  not  go  by  without  more  altercation  with  the 
Arabs,  but  fortunately  it  passed  by  without  bloodshed.  Moly- 
neux  learned  from  the  sheikh  the  number  of  the  great  tribes 
inhabiting  the  Ghor:  the  Ameers  about  eight  hundred  men, 
the  Beni-Sakkers  six  to  seven  hundred,  and  the  Anizees  fifteen 
to  sixteen  thousand. 

Fifth  day.1 — Leaving  the  camping-place,  which  the  Arabs 
called  Fath- Allah,  and  after  giving  directions  to  the  boat,  the 
party  mounted  the  hills  east  of  the  river.  The  Jordan  here 
runs  near  the  foot  of  the  western  mountains,  which  fall  away 
in  steep  cliffs  to  the  water’s  edge,  so  that  the  narrow  plain  of 
the  river,  in  but  very  few  places,  attains  to  the  breadth  of  half 
a  mile  of  cultivated  ground.  The  lower  hills  to  the  eastward 
can  be  considered  little  more  than  a  continuation  of  the  high 
range  of  mountains :  they  are  barren  and  uncultivated,,  with 
the  exception  of  occasional  wooded  patches,  and  here  and  there 
some  stunted  shrubs  or  trees  covered  with  sharp  thorns.  The 
water  this  day  was  very  troublesome,  having  many  shallows 
and  some  large  falls,  and  the  ruins  of  a  bridge  took  some  time 
to  pass,  so  that  the  boat  was  nearly  six  hours  and  a  half 
traversing  a  distance  by  water  which  some  members  of  the 
party  traversed  in  three  hours  by  land. 

At  about  noon  the  boat  reached  a  place  on  the  river  not 
far  from  Abon  Obeidah,  and  about  an  hour  and  a  half  to  the 
north  of  Wadi  Zerka,  called  by  the  Arabs  Seguia.2  The  cliffs 
on  the  western  side  are  soft  limestone,  quite  bare,  and  in  some 
places  they  cannot  be  less  than  three  or  four  hundred  feet 
high.  In  one  spot  only  they  were  observed  to  be  of  a  reddish 
hue.  This  day  the  men  in  the  boat  shot  two  tigers  and  a  boar. 

Sixth  day. — Leaving  Seguia  in  the  morning,  at  half-past 

J  Molyneux,  Exited,  l.c.  xviii.  p.  118. 

2  Burckhardt,  Trav.  p.  347. 



nine,  they  were  abreast  of  the  large  old  square  castle  of  el- 
Rabua1  perched  on  Jebel  Ajloun,  where  Ibrahim  Pasha,  when 
he  held  this  country,  kept  an  Albanian  guard  ;  but  at  present 
no  one  inhabits  it.  At  Seomia  the  river  continues  to  run  near 


the  western  hills ;  and  between  Abon  Obeidah  and  the  cliffs 
which  terminate  the  upper  ground  on  that  side,  there  is  a  con¬ 
siderable  plain  with  many  trees,  and  apparently  well  cultivated. 
This  plain  may  extend  perhaps  eight  or  ten  miles  from  north 
to  south,  the  river  Zerka  bounding  it  on  the  latter  side.  The 
Jordan  there  again  crosses  the  Ghor  obliquely,  and  everything, 
except  about  its  immediate  banks,  becomes  barren  and  desolate. 
About  noon  they  descended  from  the  upper  ground  into  the  plain, 
through  which  the  river  runs,  and  which  is  here  very  remark¬ 
able,  being  particularly  level  and  very  green  ;  and  the  contrast 
between  it  and  the  white  cliffs  which  bound  it  on  either  side 
making  it  look  like  one  lame  oreen  river.  This  was  an  event- 
fal  day  to  the  party,  for  the  company  which  was  in  the  boat 
was  attacked  when  the  leader  of  the  expedition  with  some  others 
were  a  few  miles  in  advance  on  the  shore  :  the  boat  with  its 
contents  was  taken  by  the  Arabs,  and  the  men,  stripped  of 
their  clothing,  were  permitted  to  go.  As  the  men  did  not 
make  their  appearance,  after  this  disheartening  intelligence 
reached  Molyneux,  he  pressed  on  during  the  night  towards 
Jericho,  entering  it  about  daybreak  the  next  morning. 

Thus  ended  the  reconnaissance  of  the  Jordan  by  an  English 
party ;  the  loss  of  the  boat  made  it  impossible  to  do  much  more 
at  this  time.  It  was  afterwards  recovered,  however,  and  the 
missing  men  in  due  time  made  their  appearance  at  Tiberias, 
having  endured  verv  severe  sufferings.  When  we  shall  ad- 
vance  so  far  in  our  inquiries  as  to  examine  the  Dead  Sea,  we 
shall  have  to  revert  again  to  the  narrative  of  Molyneux. 

Lieut.  LyncJis  Voyage  down  the  Lower  Jordan  from  Lake 
Tiberias  to  Beisan  (Bethshean) . 

The  scenery,  as  the  party  left  the  lake  and  advanced  into 
the  Ghor,  which  at  the  outset  is  about  three-quarters  of  a  mile 
in  breadth,  assumed  rather  a  tame  than  a  savage  character. 
The  rough  and  barren  mountains  skirting  the  valley  on  either 
hand  stretched  away  in  the  distance,  like  walls  to  some  gigantic 
1  Burckliardt,  Trav.  p.  2G6  ;  Irby  and  Mangles,  Trav.  p.  30G. 



fosse,  their  southern  extremities  half  hidden  or  entirely  lost  in 
a  faint  purple  mist.  The  average  breadth  of  the  river  near 
the  outset  was  about  seventy-five  feet ;  the  banks  were  rounded, 
and  about  thirty  feet  high,  luxuriantly  clothed  with  grass  and 
floAvers.  There  were  the  anemone,  the  marigold,  occasionally 
a  water-lily,  here  and  there  a  straggling  asphodel  close  to  the 
water’s  edge,  but  not  a  tree  nor  a  shrub.  The  party  lost  sight 
of  the  lake  five  minutes  after  leaving  it.  The  water  was  about 
ten  feet  deep,  and  was  clear.  They  had  no  difficulty  in  the 
navigation  till  after  passing  the  first  bridge,  whose  ruins  are 
very  marked.  They  then  encountered  the  first  of  that  series 
of  rapids  which  was  thereafter  to  be  the  source  of  so  much 
danger  and  difficulty.  Lynch  had  a  great  advantage  over 
Molyneux  in  his  metallic  boats,  which  were  merely  bruised  and 
dented  as  they  came  in  contact  with  the  sharp  rocks  of  the 
rapids,  where  wooden  boats  would  almost  infallibly  go  to  pieces. 
Lynch  found  only  eight  inches  of  water  in  this  time  of  flood, 
and  concluded  correctly  that  the  river  would  be  very  dry  in  the 
later  months  of  summer. 

After  passing  the  rapids  they  pitched  for  the  night,  just 
upon  the  edge  of  the  Ghor.  A  little  to  the  north,  the  Ard  el 
Hamma  swept  down  from  the  left.  The  lake  was  concealed, 
although  in  a  direct  line  quite  near,  and  a  lofty  ridge  over¬ 
looked  them  from  the  west.  The  soil  here  is  a  dark  rich  loam, 
luxuriantly  clothed,  three  feet  deep  with  flowers  :  the  purple 
bloom  of  the  thistle  predominated  ;  and  the  yellow  marigold 
and  pink  oleander  were  occasionally  relieved  by  the  scarlet 
anemone.  The  rocks  nowhere  crop  out,  but  large  boulders  of 
sandstone  and  trap  are  scattered  over  the  surface.  Among 
the  flowers  seen  there,  in  addition  to  those  already  named,  were 
the  Adonis,  or  pheasant’s  eye  ;  the  briony,  formerly  used  in 
medicine  ;  the  scabiosa  stellata,  in  great  luxuriance  ;  and  two 
kinds  of  clover. 

The  second  day  only  brought  an  increase  of  labour  and 
hardship  ;  for  hardly  had  they  started  in  the  morning,  when 
they  found  the  river  impeded  by  rapids  to  such  an  extent,  as 
to  make  the  progress  by  boat  well-nigh  impossible  :  indeed,  it 
would  have  been  hopeless,  had  there  not  been  an  old  mill  sluice, 
which  was  closed  by  stones,  but  which,  when  opened,  formed  a 
tolerable  means  of  passing  round  the  formidable  breakers. 



There  were  five  successive  cascades  in  the  river;  and  the  entire 
fall,  within  a  short  distance,  was  eighteen  feet.  After  passing 
this  dangerous  spot,  the  water  was  stiller  and  deeper.  The  soil 
on  the  banks  was  fertile,  but  entirely  uncultivated.  The  surface 
of  the  plain  was  about  fifteen  feet  above  the  river,  thence  gra¬ 
dually  ascending  a  short  distance  to  a  low  range  of  hills,  beyond 
which,  on  each  side,  the  prospect  was  closed  in  by  mountains. 
In  the  afternoon  they  passed  the  village  of  Abadiyeh,  a  large 
collection  of  mud  huts,  on  a  commanding  eminence  to  the 
right :  the  people — men,  women,  and  children — all  hurried 
down  the  hill  towards  the  river  when  they  saw  the  Americans. 
It  was  impossible  to  tell  whether  the  inhabitants  intended  to 
molest  them  ;  for  the  boats  swept  by  with  too  much  rapidity 
for  them  to  carry  their  designs  into  execution.  The  banks  of 
the  river  were  clothed  with  luxuriant  verdure, — the  rank  grass 
here  and  there  separated  by  patches  of  wild  oats.  The  moun¬ 
tain  ranges  forming  the  edges  of  the  upper  valley,  as  seen 
from  time  to  time  through  gaps  in  the  foliage  of  the  river 
banks,  were  of  a  light-brown  colour,  surmounted  with  white. 
After  passing  nine  rapids  during  the  day,  the  water  became 
clearer,  and  was  eight  feet  deep  :  the  bottom  was  hard  :  there 
were  small  trees  in  thickets  under  the  banks  ;  and  advancing 
into  the  water,  principally  tarfas,  or  tamarisks,  and  willows. 
Fish  were  frequently  seen  :  ducks,  storks,  and  a  multitude  of 
other  birds  rose  from  the  reeds  and  osiers,  or  plunged  into  the 
thickets  of  oleander  and  tamarisk  which  fringed  the  banks  : 
beyond  were  frequent  groves  of  the  wild  pistachio. 

At  eight  in  the  evening  they  reached  the  head  of  the  falls 
and  whirlpool  of  Bukah,  near  which  they  encamped  for  the 
night.  Here  are  two  ruined  villages,  one  known  as  Delhemi- 

O  O' 

yeh,  the  other  Bukah.  They  were  destroyed,  it  is  said,  by  the 
Beduins.  Many  of  the  villages  on  or  near  the  river  were 
inhabited  by  Egyptians,  placed  there  by  Ibrahim  Pasha  to 
repress  the  incursions  of  the  Arabs.  Now  that  the  strong  arm 
of  the  Egyptian  bull-dog,  as  Stephens  aptly  calls  him,  is  with¬ 
drawn,  the  fate  of  these  villages  is  not  surprising.  The 
Beduins,  in  their  incursions,  rob  the  Egyptian  fellaliin  of  their 
produce  and  the  crops.  Miserable  and  unarmed,  the  latter 
abandon  their  villages,  and  seek  a  more  secure  position,  or  trust 
to  chance  to  supply  themselves  with  food  (for  of  raiment  they 



seem  to  have  no  need),  until  the  summer  brings  the  harvest 
and  the  robber.  Once  abandoned,  their  huts  fall  into  as  much 
ruin  as  they  are  susceptible  of,  which  is  nothing  more  than  the 
washing  away  of  the  roofs  by  the  winter  rains.  The  whole 
route  through  the  day  ran  through  an  extensive  plain,  luxuriant 
in  vegetation,  and  presenting  to  view,  in  uncultivated  spots, 
richness  of  alluvial  soil,  the  produce  of  which,  with  proper 
culture,  might  nourish  a  vast  population.  The  average  width 
of  the  river  during  the  day  had  been  forty  yards,  the  depth 
from  two  and  a  half  to  six  feet. 

The  course  of  the  river  the  next  day  was  characterized  by 
a  succession  of  cascades  and  rapids  more  formidable  than  those 
which  had  been  passed  the  previous  day.  Nothing  preserved 
the  boats  from  going  to  pieces  upon  the  rocks  excepting  the 
fact  that  they  were  made  of  metal.  During  the  afternoon  they 
passed  the  mouth  of  the  Yermak  (Hieromax),  forty  yards  wide, 
with  moderate  current.  Not  long  after  the  old  bridge  came 
into  sight.  Near  this  stood  a  cliff,  which  Lynch  climbed  in 
order  to  reconnoitre  the  river.  The  crest  was  crowned  by  a 
ruined  khan,  while  at  the  foot  of  the  hill  large  masses  of 
volcanic  rock  or  tufa  were  lying  about,  as  if  shaken  from  the 
solid  mass  by  the  spasm  of  an  earthquake.  The  khan  had 
evidently  been  a  solid  structure,  and  destroyed  by  some  con¬ 
vulsion,  so  scattered  were  the  thick  and  ponderous  masses  of 
masonry.  The  bridge  gracefully  spans  the  river  at  this  point. 
It  has  one  large  and  three  smaller  Saracenic  arches  below,  and 
six  smaller  ones  above  them, — four  on  the  east,  and  two  on  the 
west  side.  The  river,  deep,  narrow,  and  impetuous,  flows 
through  the  larger  arch,  and  immediately  branches,  the  left  arm 
rushing  down  a  nearly  perpendicular  fall  of  about  eight  feet, 
and  scarcely  a  boat’s  length  ahead  encountering  the  bold  rock 
of  the  eastern  bank,  which  deflects  it  sharply  to  the  right.  The 
right  branch,  winding  by  an  island  in  the  centre,  and  spreading 
over  a  great  space,  is  shallow,  and  breaks  over  a  number  of 

Above  and  below  the  bridge,  and  in  the  bed  of  the  river, 
are  huge  blocks  of  trap  and  conglomerate ;  and  almost  im¬ 
mediately  opposite  is  a  great  fissure  exposing  perpendicular 
layers  of  basalt,  the  structure  distinct,  black,  and  porous. 
Upon  the  left  bank,  which  is  about  sixty  feet  above  the  river,  a 



short  distance  up,  were  twenty  or  thirty  black  Beduin  tents, 
with  a  number  of  camels  grazing  around, — the  men  seated  in 
groups  ;  the  women,  the  drudges  of  each  tribe,  passing  to  and 
fro,  busied  apparently  in  culinary  preparations.  Just  below 
the  bridge  they  encamped  for  the  night.  The  only  tributary 
which  had  been  passed  thus  far  was  the  Yermak,  coming  in 
from  the  east,  as  wide  and  as  deep  nearly  as  the  Jordan. 
The  bridge  is  on  the  road  from  Nablus,  through  Beisan  to 

O  Jo 


The  next  day  the  party  reached  the  utmost  limits  of 
cultivation,  and  approached  the  lower  Ghor,  a  perfect  desert, 
traversed  by  warlike  tribes.  On  the  first  heights  of  the  Ghor, 
to  the  eastward,  is  the  village  Sidumad;  the  village  Jumah  is 
on  the  western  bank. 

There  are  evidently  two  terraces  to  the  Jordan,  and  through 
the  lower  one  the  river  runs  its  labyrinthine  course.  From 
the  stream,  above  the  immediate  banks,  there  is  on  each  side  a 
singular  terrace  of  low  hills,  like  truncated  cones  ;  this  is  but 
the  bluff  terminus  of  an  extended  table-land,  reaching  quite  to 
the  base  of  the  mountains  of  Hauran  on  the  east,  and  the  high 
hills  on  the  western  side.  The  peculiarity  of  form  is  attribut¬ 
able,  perhaps,  to  the  washing  of  rain  through  a  long  series  of 
years.  The  hill-sides  presented  the  appearance  of  chalk, 
without  the  slightest  vestige  of  vegetation,  and  were  absolutely 
blinding  from  the  reflected  sunlight.  At  times  the  boats  were 
perfectly  becalmed,  the  trees  and  bushes  which  lined  the  banks 
intercepting  the  light  air  that  came  down  from  the  mountains, 
when,  even  at  this  early  season  (April),  the  heat  was  intense; 
and  the  birds,  ceasing  to  sing,  hid  themselves  among  the 
foliage,  from  which  the  noise  of  the  boatmen  did  not  startle 

The  first  hour  of  the  journey,  which  was  through  a  most 
beautiful  tract  of  alluvial,  the  country  was  entirely  destitute  of 
cultivation  ;  nothing  but  a  rank  luxuriance  of  thistles  and  wild 
grass  indicating  the  natural  productiveness  of  the  soil.  The 
variety  of  thorns  and  thistles  was  remarkable.  Along  the  banks 
of  the  river  ran  a  singular  terrace  of  low  hills,  in  shape  like 
truncated  cones,  which  extended  quite  to  the  base  of  the 
mountains.  From  thistles  and  wild  grass  they  advanced  into 
utter  barrenness  and  desolation,  the  soil  presenting  the  appear- 



ance  of  chalk,  without  the  slightest  vegetation.  Around  and 
quite  near  were  large  flocks  of  storks,  in  no  manner  alarmed  or 
disconcerted  ;  some  even  stood  on  one  leg,  in  quiet  contem¬ 
plation  of  the  unusual  spectacle  which  the  caravan  presented. 

That  night  they  camped  two  hours’  distance  from  Beisan, 
where  we  take  leave  of  the  party  for  the  present. 





It  is  to  the  hold  Burckhardt  that  we  owe  the  identification, 
in  1812, 1  of  the  ruins  of  Gadara  and  the  hot  springs  in  their 
neighbourhood.  Since  then  the  place  has  been  visited  and 
described  by  Irby,  Mangles,  and  Buckingham.1 2 

The  first  important  tributary  of  the  Jordan,  directly  south 
of  Lake  Tiberias,  and  about  two  hours  distant  from  it,  enters 
the  river  directly  below  the  ruined  village  of  el-Bukah.  It 
is  the  Hieromax  of  Pliny,  u  Gadara  Hieromace  prsefluente.” 
Strabo  and  Ptolemy  made  no  allusion  to  it.  In  the  Talmud  it 
is  mentioned  under  the  name  of  the  Jarmoch,3  whence  springs 
the  appellation  Jarmuk,4  which  has  become  common  among 
the  Arabs,  and  which  Edrisi  uses  as  early  as  the  twelfth 
century.  It  was  probably  not  a  boundary  river  in  the  old 
Hebrew  times,  for  its  name  is  never  met  in  the  biblical 
writings.  It  receives  the  name  which  is  now  generally  given 
to  it  (the  Menadra)  from  an  Arab  tribe  dwelling  on  its  banks, 
the  Menadhere.  The  name  Sheriat,  which  is  joined  with  this, 
is  one  which  it  shares  with  other  rivers,  and  indicates  a  ford 
which  is  used  as  a  watering-place, — a  name  which  is  also 
applied  to  the  Jordan  in  consequence  of  the  passage  of  the 

1  Burckhardt,  Trav.  pp.  270  274. 

2  Dr  Anderson,  a  member  of  the  American  Dead  Sea  Expedition,  is  a 
still  more  recent  explorer.  His  account  may  be  found  in  Lynch’s  volume. 
— Ed. 

3  Lightfoot,  Opp.  omn.  in  Centuria  Chorogra.  cap.  iv.  fol.  173. 

4  Edrisi,  in  Jaubert,  T.  i.  p.  338 ;  Abulfedse  Tabul.  Syr.  ed.  Koehler, 
fol.  148. 



Israelites  through  it.  The  Jordan  is  distinguished  from  the 
Sheriat  Menadra  by  the  appellation  el-Kebir,  i.e.  the  great 
river;  it  is  very  seldom  called  by  the  Arabs  the  Jordan,  or  in 
the  older  form,  el-Urdan. 

The  head  waters  of  the  Sheriat  el  Menadra,  or  Mandhur, 
issue  from  the  distant  tracts  of  the  Jebel  Hauran  and  of  Jolan 
(Auranitis  and  Gaulonitis),  although  it  may  be  a  little  difficult 
to  tell  at  what  precise  spot  to  localize  their  source.  Burckhardt 
names  four  tributaries,  the  most  northern  one  of  which  is  the 
Ilereir,  whose  fountain-head  is  in  the  swampy  tract  near  Tell 
Dilly,  on  the  pilgrim  road  south  of  Damascus,  between  the  two 
stations  el-Szanamein  and  Shemskein,  on  the  border  line  of 
Jeidur  (Ituraea)  at  the  north,  Jolan  (Gaulonitis)  in  the  west, 
and  Hauran  (Auranitis)  in  the  east.  Only  the  smaller  tribu¬ 
taries  from  Jolan — Wadi  Moakkar,  Wadi  Hamy  Sakker,  and 
Wadi  Aallan,  which  are  crossed  on  the  route  from  Feik  by  way 
of  Nowa  to  Damascus — lie  west  of  the  Hereir ;  the  other  two 
known  ones  are  on  the  east.  The  one  is  the  Nalir  Kokad,  which 
flows  through  eastern  Jolan,  not  far  from  Ain  Shakhab;  and 
the  other  is  the  Buj,  and  comes  from  Mezereib. 

The  springs  near  the  place  last  mentioned,  the  first  castle 
south  of  Damascus,  and  three  hours  south  of  Shemskein,  are 
well  known  on  account  of  their  abundant  supply  of  water  and 
fish.  The  spot  is  a  favourite  stopping-place  for  caravans  on 
the  way  to  Mecca ;  they  make  the  final  preparations  for  enter¬ 
ing  on  the  great  march  through  the  Syrian  and  Arabian  deserts. 
These  springs,  whose  waters,  when  they  come  together,  form  a 
lake  half  an  hour  in  circumference,1  and  flow  into  el-Buj,  are, 
if  not  the  most  distant,  at  least  the  best  known  and  the  most 
abundant  feeders  of  the  river  which  takes  the  name  Sheriat  not 
far  from  Abiela,  and  which  subsequently  passes  the  sites  of  that 
ancient  city  and  Capitolias.  Its  shores  are  tilled  by  the  Men-, 
adhere  Arabs,  who  live  in  tents  and  move  from  place  to  place, 
but  never  forsake  the  river :  they  sow  wheat  and  barley,  and 
in  their  gardens  raise  grapes,  citrons,  pomegranates,  and  many 
kinds  of  vegetables,  which  they  sell  in  the  villages  of  Jolan  and 

As  we  go  westward  the  river-bed  becomes  narrower,  and  is 
closely  hemmed  in  between  the  rocks  on  both  sides.  In  this 

1  Burckliardt,  Trav.  pp.  241-246. 




cleft,  and  north  of  the  height  on  which  are  the  ruins  of  Om 
Keis  (Gadara),  lies  the  long  row  of  the  hot  and  very  profuse 
medicinal  springs  of  the  Gadarenes,  among  which  that  of  Ham- 
met  esh  Sheikh  is  one  of  the  chief.  From  this  point  the  river 
runs  in  a  north-westerly  direction,  following  the  rocky  valley ; 
and  after  pursuing  a  course  of  two  or  three  hours’  duration,  it 
enters  the  Jordan.  The  Sheriat  is  full  of  fish,  its  course  is 
rapid,  its  shores  thickly  overgrown  with  oleander;  its  breadth, 
where  it  enters  the  Jordan,  is  stated  by  Burckhardt1  to  have 
been  about  thirty-five  paces  in  May  ;  its  depth,  four  or  five  feet. 

As  the  lower  course  of  the  Sheriat  el  Mandhur  is  of  especial 
interest  in  connection  with  its  history  and  natural  history,  I 
shall  connect  the  discussion  of  it  with  that  of  the  Jordan 

Om  Keis,  i.e.  Mater  astutice ,  is  the  modern  name  of  a  great 
village  which  lies  west  of  the  district  of  Kefarat,  and  near  the 
highest  part  of  the  ridge  which  bounds  the  valley  of  Lake 
Tiberias  and  the  Jordan  on  the  east;  with  its  hot  springs,  it 
lies  far  above  the  deep  cleft  through  which  the  Sheriat  flows, 
about  an  hour’s  distance  north  of  the  ruins.  The  southern 
declivity  of  Om  Keis  is  bounded  by  the  small  Wadi  Araba, 
which  runs  westward  into  the  Jordan  parallel  with  the  Sheriat 
according  to  some  authorities,  or,  according  to  Burckhardt,2 
terminating  the  Sheriat  itself  before  it  enters  the  Jordan.  The 
place,  which  was  discovered  by  Seetzen,3  and  called  by  him 
Mkes  (an  abbreviated  form  of  Om  Keis),  is  said  to  lie  on  the 
summit  of  a  mountain,  formed  by  the  junction  of  the  Sheriat 
valley  and  Wadi  el  Arab.  He  found  the  steep  sides  of  the 
mountain,  to  which  he  ascended  from  the  cavernous  southern 
side  called  Jadar,  i.e.  Gadara,  to  be  composed  of  limestone, 
with  frequent  deposits  of  flint.  He  regarded  the  Sheriat  as  the 
natural  geological  boundary  of  the  basalt  region  of  Jolan  and 
Hauran  on  the  north,  and  of  the  limestone4  of  Jebel  Ajlun 
and  Jilead  on  the  south. 

The  name  Jedur,  which  Seetzen  found  current  among  the 
shepherds5  on  the  south-east  slope  of  the  mountain,  would  indi¬ 
cate  that  the  ancient  Gadara  was  in  the  neighbourhood,  even  if 

1  Burckhardt,  Trav.  p.  273.  2  Ibid.  p.  271. 

3  Seetzen,  in  Mon.  Corresp.  xviii.  pp.  417-420. 

4  Ibid.  p.  353.  5  Ibid.  p.  357. 




the  Roman  architecture  on  the  summit  did  not  confirm  the 
same  when  taken  in  connection  with  Pliny’s  and  Jerome’s 
statements.  The  former  says  :  Gadara  Hieromace  praffluente  ; 
the  latter,  under  the  word  Gadara,  says  :  Urbs  trails  Jordanem 
contra  Scythopolim  et  Tiberiadem,  ad  orientalem  plagam  sita, 
in  monte  ad  cujus  radices  aquae  calidae  erumpunt,  balneis  super 
aedificatis.  Although  the  name  Jedur  is  given  to  a  large  part 
of  the  Ilauran  territory  east  of  Om  Keis,  and  upon  the  north 
bank  of  the  Sheriat,  and  therefore  seems  to  denote  the  province 
in  whose  midst  the  ruins  and  hot  springs  lie,  yet  this  cannot 
affect  the  name  of  the  ruin  itself ;  and  all  the  grounds  which 
have  been  adduced  to  disprove  the  location  of  Gadara  at  this 
place  are,  as  Leake  and  Gesenius  show,  without  any  real  worth. 
Leake1  remarks  that  Burckhardt  was  not  able  to  make  the 
distance  of  the  ruins  of  Om  Keis  from  the  Hieromax  and  the 
hot  baths  harmonize  with  the  position  of  Gadara ;  but  Eusebius 
and  Jerome  say  explicitly  that  the  hot  springs  are  not  in  close 
proximity  with  Gadara,  but  some  distance  away,  at  the  foot  of 
the  mountain  on  which  the  ruins  lie.  In  another  place  we  are 
told  in  the  Onomasticon ,  u  est  et  alia  villa  in  vicinia  Gadarse, 
nomine  Amatha,  ubi  Calidse  aquae  erumpunt,”  perhaps  the 
Hammath,  i.e.  hot  baths,  of  Josh.  xix.  35,  which  Keil2  holds  to 
be  identical  with  Tiberias.  This  is  enough.  to  set  Burckhardt’s 


doubts  aside.  According  to  Josephus,  the  city  was  restored  by 
Pompey,  and  taken  subsequently  by  Vespasian:  Strabo3  does 
not  know  the  place,  and  confounds  it  with  Gaza;  Pliny  locates 
it  in  the  Decapolis  of  Peraea;  and  Josephus  calls  it  the  Metro¬ 
polis  Peraeae,  which  the  coins  also  confirm.  The  place  attracts 
great  interest  to  itself  in  consequence  of  the  healing  of  the  man 
possessed  of  demons  (Matt.  viii.  28,  Mark  v.  1,  Luke  viii.  26) ;4 
and  there  can  be  no  doubt,  says  Gesenius,  that  the  caves  which 
are  described  here  by  travellers  are  the  same  in  which  the  people 
similarly  afflicted  concealed  themselves.  Reland  has  mentioned 
the  high  esteem  in  which  the  baths  were  held  in  the  first  cen¬ 
turies  of  the  Christian  era. 

1  Leake,  Pref.  to  Burckhardt,  Trav.  p.  iv. ;  Gesenius’  Note  to  Burck¬ 
hardt,  i.  p.  427. 

2  Keil,  Comment,  zu  Josua ,  p.  353. 

3  Grosskurd,  Note  to  Strabo,  Pt.  iii.  p.  260,  Not.  1. 

4  Von  Raumer,  Pal.  p.  240.  (Tristram,  p.  458.) 



Seetzen  describes  only  in  general  terms  the  ruins  of  Mkes 
which  he  discovered,  and  ascribes  them  to  some  finely  built  and 
rich  city  of  ancient  times.  This,  he  thinks,  is  made  evident 
not  only  by  the  remains  of  pillars  and  buildings,  but  also  by 
the  large  number  of  sarcophagi,  many  of  which  are  profusely 
decorated  with  figures  in  relief,  and  with  carved  garlands. 
They  have  in  many  cases  been  remarkably  well  preserved. 
It  surprised  Seetzen  to  find  that  all  of  these  were  made  of 
basalt,  probably  brought  from  Jolan.  He  discovered  at  Mkes 
several  large  and  finely  wrought  caves,  but  not  a  single  house. 
A  half-dozen  families  were  living;  in  caves,  whose  size  he  was 
not  able  to  measure  on  the  outside ;  he  only  learned  how  really 
spacious  they  were  by  going  inside  one,  where  he  was  hospitably 
entertained  by  the  occupants.  In  order  to  assure  himself  of 
the  identity  of  these  remains  with  those  of  the  ancient  Gadara, 
which  had  once  been  so  celebrated  for  its  baths  that  they  were 
thought  to  be  only  surpassed  in  the  whole  Roman  empire  by 
those  of  Baiae,  Seetzen  inquired  where  they  were,  and  discovered 
their  locality  at  the  foot  of  the  mountain  on  the  north  side,  and 
an  hour’s  distance  away,  though  but  a  few  steps  from  the  river 
Sheriat.  He  saw  the  steam  arise  from  the  hot  springs,  but  he 
could  not  reach  them,  the  river  being  so  much  swollen  by  the 
long-continued  rains  as  to  be  unfordable. 

Burckhardt1  came  in  May  1812,  from  Hauran  westward, 
by  way  of  Abil  and  Ilebras,  reaching  Om  Keis  on  his  way. 
Here  he  was  surprised  to  find  an  entire  mountain  covered  with 
ancient  ruins,  although  only  the  summit  bore  the  traces  of  a 
compact  city.  He  seems  to  have  heard  nothing  while  there  of 
the  hot  springs  near  by,  for  he  returned  from  the  Jordan  the 
next  day  to  make  a  special  examination  of  them.  He  found 
the  same  caves  and  sarcophagi  which  had  been  mentioned  by 
Seetzen  :  of  the  latter  he  counted  seventy.  On  the  summit  there 
were  several  hewn  stones  and  fragments,  but  no  perfect  build¬ 
ings.  On  the  west  and  north-west  sides  of  the  mountain  he 
saw  the  remains  of  two  great  amphitheatres,  one  of  which  lay 
very  deeply  hollowed  out  of  the  steep  sloping  rock,  with  a  very 
small  arena,  but  with  seats,  ascending  so  high  that  the  upper¬ 
most  row  is  forty  feet  above  the  lowest.  The  more  western  of 
the  two  theatres  was  in  much  the  best  state  of  preservation. 

1  Burckhardt,  Trav.  pp.  271-273. 




The  largest  part  of  the  ruins  were  to  be  seen  still  farther  west 
on  a  tract  of  level  ground,  where  along  a  paved  street  there 
could  be  seen  a  large  number  of  shattered  pillars,  capitals,  and 
fragments  of  temples.  With  the  exception  of  the  two  theatres 
and  a  single  column,  which  were  of  grey  granite,  Burckhardt 
found  all  the  architectural  remains  to  be  of  the  indigenous 
limestone  which  constitutes  all  the  mountain  land  south  of  the 
Sheriat  as  far  as  to  Wadi  Zerka.  He  (in  this  agreeing  with 
Seetzen)  found  in  the  whole  Jebel  Ajlun  as  far  as  to  Beni 
Obeid  no  more  black  basalt ;  and  only  on  the  way  from  Hebras  to 
Oin  Keis,  on  the  south  shore  of  the  Sheriat,  did  he  see  the  last 
alternating  layers  of  basalt  and  limestone.  It  is  quite  clear  that 
the  ravine  into  which  the  lower  Sheriat  flows  is  only  a  break  in 
the  basaltic  rock,  through  which  also  the  hot  springs  have  been 
able  to  cleave  a  way  for  themselves. 

Burckhardt’ s  visit  the  next  day  to  these  springs  has  made 
us  able  to  understand  their  location.  He  found1  the  first  one 
lying  about  an  hour  and  three-quarters  distant  from  Szammagh, 
where  he  had  spent  the  intervening  night.  The  river  flows 
through  a  deep  bed,  having  banks  of  basalt  in  some  places  a 
hundred  feet  high,  to  whose  black  sides  the  green  upon  the  top 
forms  a  very  striking  contrast.  The  smell  of  sulphur  is  per¬ 
ceptible  a  hundred  paces  off  from  the  springs.  Grass  and 
bushes  grow  thickly  around,  and  a  few  old  palms  are  also  seen. 
The  main  spring  jets  from  a  basin  forty  feet  in  circumference, 
five  feet  in  depth,  and  surrounded  by  walls  which  have  partly 
fallen  in :  the  brook  which  runs  away  to  the  Sheriat  is  so  hot 
that  one  can  hardly  bear  to  dip  the  hand  into  it;  it  covers 
the  stones  with  a  thick  sulphureous  crust,  which  the  Arabs 
detach  to  rub  their  horses  down  with.  The  basin  was  originally 
cemented  and  covered,  but  of  the  structure  which  surmounted 
it  only  a  few  fragments  and  a  broken  pillar  remain ;  all  the 
large  rocks  have  been  much  affected  by  the  power  of  the 
steam.  This  spring  bears  the  name  of  IJammet  es  Sheikh, 
and  is  said  to  be  the  hottest  one  of  all.  Only  a  few  steps  away 
is  another  spring  of  a  lower  temperature,  but  surrounded  with 
ruins  of  some  ancient  structure  there :  this  is  called  Hammet 
er  Bih,  and  is  connected  subterraneously  with  the  larger  spring. 
Burckhardt  learned  that  there  are  eitdit  similar  fountains,  and 

1  Burckhardt,  Trav.  pp.  276-27S. 



that  the  most  distant  of  them  is  two  and  a  half  hours  farther 
from  the  Jordan  than  the  first.  They  are  said  to  be  found  upon 
both  sides  of  the  river.  It  is  to  be  regretted  that  since  that  time 
no  naturalist1  has  carefully  examined  these  interesting  springs. 
Burckhardt  learned  that  in  the  month  of  April  the  largest 
spring,  Hammet  es  Sheikh,  is  visited  by  many  sick  people  of 
the  adjacent  country  for  the  sake  of  its  medicinal  qualities  :  they 
even  come  from  places  as  far  away  as  Nablus  and  Nazareth, 
and  stay  as  long  as  two  weeks  there :  the  place  is  considered 
even  preferable  to  the  springs  at  Tiberias.  Antoninus  Martyr 
visited2  the  baths  of  Gadara  about  the  year  600,  and  calls 
them  Thermae  Helise ;  he  says  that  they  were  much  visited  by 
persons  afflicted  with  leprosy.  Eunapius  of  Sardes,  the  rhetori¬ 
cian  and  physician,  who  lived  towards  the  beginning  of  the  fifth 
century,  says  that  two  of  the  smaller  fountains  were  called  Eros 
and  Anteros  ;  in  the  Talmud  they  are  named  the  warm  baths 
of  Gadara ;  Eusebius  and  Josephus  call  them  Amath  and 
Amatha  (Hamath).  Irby  and  Mangles,  who  visited  Om  Keis  3 
in  1818,  spent  the  night  in  one  of  the  holes — which  was  large 
enough,  according  to  their  report,  to  shelter  thirty  men — with  a 
family  which  received  them  very  hospitably.  Their  stable  was 
at  the  farther  end  of  the  long  catacomb,  while  they  occupied 
the  hither  extremity.  In  ascending  the  hill  they  found  remains 
of  the  ancient  city  walls,  and  the  cemented  pavement  of  the 
streets  so  well  preserved  in  many  places,  that  the  marks  of 
wheels  could  in  some  places  be  seen.  The  main  avenue  was 
accompanied  throughout  its  length  by  rows  of  pillars.  The 
ancient  necropolis  could  be  made  out  on  the  northern  side,  where 
the  clefts,  excavated  to  a  considerable  depth  in  the  rock,  and 
guarded  by  swinging  doors,  showed  the  site  of  former  sepul¬ 
chres.  These  doors  in  some  cases  were  still  swinging  upon 
stone  hinges.  -  On  the  outside  panels  were  carved  and  adorned. 
The  result  of  a  visit  to  the  baths  was  only  to  confirm  the 

1  Dr  Anderson,  a  naturalist  who  accompanied  Lynch’s  expedition,  was 
prevented  by  the  want  of  time  from  even  seeing  them  at  all,  although  he 
made  a  hasty  visit  to  the  ruins  on  the  hill.  The  necessity  of  pressing  with 
all  haste  down  the  Jordan  rendered  such  a  course  imperative.  See  also 
Tristram,  Land  of  Israel,  p.  458. — Ed. 

2  Itinerar.  Beati  Antonini  Mart,  ex  Muse.  Cl.  Menardi ,  1640,  4,  5. 

3  Irby  and  Mangles,  Trav.  Lett.  iv.  pp.  296-298. 

YOL.  II. 




account  of  Burckliardt ;  yet  the  temperature  of  the  chief  springs 
was  found  to  be  lower  than  it  had  been  observed  at  Tiberias, 
and  the  crust  on  the  hottest  *basin  was  rubbed  by  the  Arabs 
upon  the  skins  of  their  camels. 

The  most  critical  antiquarian  researches  1  which  have  been 
made  in  our  time  into  the  architecture  of  Gadara,  as  well  as  in 
other  places  in  Persea,  have  been  made  by  Mr  Banks,  who  was 
accompanied  by  Buckingham.  The  latter,  however,  made  use 
of  extracts  and  copies  of  drawings  made  from  the  papers  of  the 
former  by  a  seaman,  evidently  of  good  intelligence  and  skill, 
but  with  no  knowledge  of  science  or  art.  To  those  Bucking- 
ham  has  appended  an  immense  mass  of  irrelevant  quotations, 
and  a  tedious  narrative  of  his  own,  filling  forty-four  pages  upon 
Gadara  alone.  Whatever  worth  they  have,  is  to  be  attributed 
to  the  extracts  made  from  Banks.  It  is  most  deeply  to  be  re¬ 
gretted,  for  the  sake  of  science,  that  the  latter  still  persists  in 
withholding  from  the  public  the  extremely  valuable  results  of 
his  own  observations. 

I  will  detach  from  Buckingham’s  pages  only  a  few  observa¬ 
tions.2  Among  the  three  first  sepulchre  caves  which  are  met 
in  entering  the  city  from  the  east,  the  stone  door  of  the  third 
was  in  a  state  of  perfect  preservation.  On  entering  the  place, 
the  first  chamber  was  found  to  be  seven  feet  high,  twelve  paces 
long,  and  ten  broad ;  then  came  a  second  chamber,  measuring 
ten  by  twelve  feet,  and  regularly  hewn.  The  portal,  archi¬ 
trave,  and  doors  are  all  of  the  same  black  basalt  out  of  which 
the  sarcophagi  are  made.  The  architrave  is  adorned  with 
three  roughly-sculptured  busts,  with  bare  head,  full  face,  and 
prominent  ears. 

There  were  other  caves  of  similar  aspect :  one  with  ten 
niches  for  coffins,  and  smaller  ones  for  the  reception  of  lamps  : 
the  architrave  of  this  one  was  decorated  externally  with  a 
garland.  In  many  of  the  vaults  sarcophagi  were  found. 
The  greatest  number  of  these,  however,  were  to  be  seen 
scattered  around  over  the  top  of  the  hill :  they  were  all  of 
black  basalt,  and  were  adorned  with  garlands,  busts  of  Apollo, 
and  little  Cupids  ;  also  with  family  coats  of  arms.  Other  orna- 

1  Irby  and  Mangles,  Trav.  Lett.  iv.  pp.  296-298 ;  Quarterly  Review, 
vol.  xxvi.  p.  389  ;  comp.  Gesenius’  Burckliardt,  Pt.  i.  Note,  pp.  530,  537. 

2  Buckingham,  Trav.  in  Pal.  vol.  ii.  chap,  xxiii.  pp.  252-296. 



ments  were  wanting.  There  were  fully  two  hundred  perfect 
sarcophagi  counted  here,  not  to  speak  of  the  countless  frag¬ 
ments  which  strewed  the  ground. 

The  city,  whose  ruins  extend  from  east  to  west  half  an 
English  mile,  and  a  quarter  of  a  mile  from  north  to  south,  dis¬ 
plays  on  the  east  a  portal  of  the  ancient  gate.  Beneath  passed  the 
main  street,  running  westward,  fifteen  paces  broad,  and  paved 
in  the  most  admirable  manner  with  black  basalt  blocks.  It  runs 
for  the  most  part  past  colonnades  of  Roman  and  Corinthian 
pillars,  while  the  remains  of  others  are  also  scattered  around. 
There  are  also  the  relics  of  temples  and  two  theatres,  to  which 
may  be  added  another  near  the  baths.  So  many  are  the  proofs 
of  ancient  splendour  and  of  a  dense  population,  where  now 
there  is  almost  unbroken  solitude !  Burckhardt  saw  not  a  soul 
in  Om  Keis,  Buckingham  only  a  few  families  in  the  tombs, 
while  at  the  northern  side  of  the  village,  and  on  the  site  of  the 
ancient  necropolis,  there  are  only  pitiful  hovels,  constructed 
mostly  of  the  fragments  of  broken  sarcophagi.  He  reckoned 
the  whole  population  as  two  hundred  souls ;  and  their  wan¬ 
dering  through  the  tombs  recalled  vividly  to  his  mind  those 
Gadarenes  mentioned  in  Luke  viii.  27,  who  did  not  dwell  in 
houses,  but  in  tombs. 

In  one  of  these  a  waggon-maker  had  taken  up  his  abode : 
in  another,  which  was  adorned  with  an  elegant  architrave, 
and  an  admirably  constructed  stone  door,  which  moved  lightly 
on  its  hinges,  was  a  cistern  to  which  a  flight  of  steps  descended, 
and  by  its  side  a  vault :  in  one  apartment  twelve  feet  square' 
stood  a  perfect  sarcophagus,  which  had  been  converted  into  a 
meal-chest  and  a  receptacle  of  other  provisions.  The  people 
of  the  place  had  a  different  physiognomy  from  other  Arabs — 
not  so  dark  as  the  swarthy  Beduins,  who  are  always  exposed 
to  the  weather,  but  with  a  strongly  marked  African  cast  of 
features.  The  women  had  curly  hair,  thick  lips,  and  promi¬ 
nent  teeth.  They  insisted  that  their  stock  had  always  in¬ 
habited  the  neighbourhood  of  these  springs.  They  had  neither 
horses,  camels,  goats,  nor  sheep,  but  the  finest  herds  of  buffaloes 
and  dogs. 

Buckingham  visited1  the  springs  as  well:  he  found  the 
tents  of  some  Beduins  in  the  neighbourhood.  The  northern 
1  Buckingham,  Trav.  l.c.  ii.  pp.  297-308. 



shore  of  the  Sheriat  has,  he  says,1  a  dark,  fruitful  soil,  which  is 
here  and  there  tilled.2 



South  of  the  confluence  of  the  Jordan  with  the  Yarmuk, 
the  valley  widens  and  displays  an  oasis-like  fertility  and  beauty. 
On  the  western  bank  lies  the  only  place  of  importance,  Beishan. 
Burckhardt,  in  his  cross  journey  from  Nazareth  to  Abu  Obeida 
and  Szalt,  paid  particular  attention  to  the  district  which  we  are 
about  to  describe ;  Irby,  Mangles,  and  others,  followed  him  over 
much  the  same  route  which  he  himself  took.  In  one  day,3 
July  2, 1812,  Burckhardt  passed  with  a  caravan  from  Nazareth 
across  the  south-eastern  end  of  the  plain  of  Jezreel,  passing 
Mount  Tabor,  and  a  number  of  fountains  near  Endor  and  Om 
et  Taybe,  on  his  direct  road  to  Beishan,  reaching,  after  about 
seven  hours,  the  village  of  Merassrass,  at  the  top  of  a  row  of 
hills,  whence  begins  the  descent  from  the  plateau  to  the  depres¬ 
sion  or  Ghor  in  which  the  Jordan  lies. 

North  of  the  village  just  mentioned  is  the  Wadi  el  Bireh, 
which  runs  from  the  south  base  of  Tabor  to  the  Jordan ;  and 
south  of  the  village  is  Wadi  Oesche,  whose  general  course  is 

1  Dr  Anderson,  who  lias  already  been  mentioned  as  hastily  examining 
the  ruins  of  Gadara,  has  added  nothing  of  material  importance  to  the 
accounts  already  cited.  His  description  of  the  theatre,  cited  from  his 
manuscript  notes  in  Lynch's  Dead  Sea  Expedition ,  p.  197,  is  more  full  than 
that  of  the  others.  According  to  his  report,  it  is  half  oval  in  shape,  and 
the  short  diameter,  i.e.  the  length  of  the  enclosed  space,  is  about  eighty 
feet,  the  entire  diameter  about  a  hundred  and  twenty  feet.  At  the  upper 
edge  of  each  step  is  a  cornice  several  inches  in  breadth.  The  seats  are 
interrupted  by  five  passages,  converging  towards  the  centre  of  the  open 
space  below.  Exterior  to  the  seats  are  three  concentric  walls,  furnishing 
a  covered  -corridor  of  eighteen  or  twenty  feet  width  within,  and  an  outer 
opening  occupied  by  staircases  ascending  to  the  upper  gallery,  on  a  level 
with  the  hinder  seats. — Ed. 

2  See  also  Buckingham,  Trav.  ii.  p.  308 ;  and  von  Raumer,  Pal.  p.  44. 

3  Burckhardt,  Trav.  pp.  342-344. 


the  same.  North  of  Wadi  el  Bireh  there  is  only  one  tributary 
of  the  Jordan  known  to  us  to  come  in  from  the  west,  the  Wadi 
el  Fejas,  which  runs  from  the  northern  side  of  Mount  Tabor. 
South  of  the  Wadi  Oesche  is  the  Wadi  Beishan,  which  passes 
through  the  midst  of  the  town  bearing  that  name,  carrying  fer¬ 
tility  and  beauty  wherever  it  goes. 

These  four  tributaries — Wadi  el  Fejas,  Wadi  el  Bireh, 
Wadi  Oesche,  and  Wadi  Beishan,  all  of  which  flow  into  the 
Jordan  from  the  west — do  not  merit  the  name  of  Sheriat,  like 
the  Mandera ;  but  are,  in  truth,  mere  wadis,  having  a  tem¬ 
porary  stream  during  the  rainy  season,  and  therefore  not  with¬ 
out  influence  on  the  adjacent  valleys,  hills,  and  villages.  On 
this  account,  I  cannot  omit  to  speak  of  them  before  coming 
to  describe  the  geographical  character  of  Beishan.  The  dis¬ 
trict  which  they  drain  forms  a  considerable  part  of  the  basin  of 
the  middle  Jordan;  and  the  ready  access  which  they  afford  to 
the  hill  country  of  Galilee,  has  always  given  them  great  his¬ 
torical  importance.1 

All  the  four  wadis  named  above  run  in  almost  parallel 
lines  to  the  great  Jordan  depression;  their  course  being  short 
and  the  descent  rapid  from  the  long  mountain  chain,  which 
presents  itself  here,  in  the  region  south  of  Galilee,  in  a  more 
plateau-shaped  and  broadly- arched  form  than  in  the  most  ele¬ 
vated  districts  of  Samaria  and  Galilee.  The  springs  which 
feed  them  are  found  upon  the  watershed  line  between  the 
Ghor  and  the  Mediterranean  :  their  waters,  pouring  as  they 
do  into  a  stream  lying  from  eight  hundred  to  a  thousand  feet 
deeper  than  the  sea-level,  and  having  so  short  a  course,  must 
run  with  proportionately  greater  violence  than  those  which, 
like  the  Kishon,  debouch  on  the  western  coast.  The  line  of 
watershed  is  not  a  straight,  but  a  very  winding  one,  connecting 
the  three  mountain  groups  standing  on  the  common  plateau, 
Tabor,  the  smaller  Hermon  (more  correctly  Jebel  el  Dahy), 
and  Jebel  Gilboa.  These  mountains  form  the  arc  of  a  circle 
on  the  eastern  side  of  the  plain  of  Esdraelon ;  but  they  are 
disconnected  from  each  other  by  the  wadis  alluded  to  above, 
and  converted  into  little  isolated  systems,  the  line  of  direction 
in  each  of  which  does  not  run  north  and  south,  but  parallel 
with  the  wadis,  i.e.  from  north-west  to  south-east. 

1  See  Hammer-Purgstall  in  Wien.  Jalirb.  1836,  vol.  Ixxiw  p.  46. 



1.  Wadi  el  Fejas,  and  its  head  springs  in  the  Avd  el  Homme. 

The  most  northern  of  the  wadis  named  takes  its  rise  north- 
north-east  of  Mount  Tabor,  between  it  and  the  mountain  chain 
west  of  Lake  Tiberias,  and  flows  south-eastward  from  the 
village  of  Hattin,  on  the  northern  edge  of  the  plain  Ard  el 
Hamma,1  plunging  at  last  rapidly  down  to  the  Jordan  valley. 

This  elevated  plain,  the  Ard  el  Hamma,  although  covered 
with  basaltic  fragments,2  has  a  very  fruitful  soil,  and  yields 
fine  crops  of  dhurra,  although  in  dry  seasons  the  ground  opens 
with  wide  cracks,  whence  thistles  and  thorns  spring  with  great 
rapidity.  Burckhardt  says  of  the  plain,  that  a  large  portion 
of  it  is  overgrown  with  the  wild  artichoke,  which  produces  a 
small  blue  flower,  which  has  been  considered  by  some  the  u  lily 
of  the  field  ”  referred  to  by  the  Saviour. 

The  road  from  Tabor  to  Damascus  crosses  the  plain  Ard  el 
Hamma,  and  passes  the  Khan  el  Tudjar,  where  every  Monday 
the  peasants  meet  and  have  a  market,3  Kefr  Sabt,  Subieh,  and 
Hattin,  the  last  named  lying  near  the  double-horned  and  saddle- 
shaped  pass  known  as  the  Kurun  Hattin.  These  two  knobs, 
between  which  passes  the  road  leading  northward,  rise  only 
about  sixty  or  eighty  feet  above  the  plain,  whose  elevation 
above  the  sea  is  estimated  at  about  a  thousand  feet.  The 
northern  part  of  the  plain  in  the  neighbourhood  of  the  Kurun 
Hattin  has  a  deep  historical  interest :  for  here  it  was  that  the 
Sultan  Saladin  gained  so  complete  a  victory  in  the  year  1187 
over  the  army  of  the  crusaders,4  that  the  latter  never  recovered 
from  it,  and  were  soon  compelled  to  withdraw  entirely  from 
Palestine.  A  modern  legend,  entirely  unfounded,  however, 
has  made  this  place  the  scene  of  the  miracle  which  supplied 
five  thousand  persons  with  bread. 

North-west  of  the  village  of  Subieh  may  be  seen  the  little 
hamlets  of  Turan  and  Kefr  Kenna,5,  the  latter  of  which,  lying 

1  Burckhardt,  Trav.  p.  333 ;  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  p.  369  ; 
Russegger,  Reise ,  iii.  p.  130. 

2  Burckhardt,  Trav.  p.  333  ;  Buckingham,  ii.  pp.  321-323. 

3  Buckingham,  Trav.  in  Pal.  ii.  pp.  320-322  ;  Wilson,  Lands  of  the 
Bible ,  ii.  pp.  108,  305. 

4  Wilken,  Gesch.  der  Kreutzziige ,  iii.  p.  282  ;  Reinaud,  in  Michelet,  Extr. 
iv.  p.  194;  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  pp.  375-485. 

5  Robinson,  Bib.  Researches ,  ii.  pp.  346-352. 



five  miles  north-east  of  Nazareth,  has  been  erroneously  con¬ 
sidered  the  Cana  of  Galilee  mentioned  in  John  ii.  The  brooks 
of  this  place  flow  westward,  while  those  of  Subieh  enter  the 
Jordan.  The  watershed  line  therefore  crosses  the  plain  on 
the  north  side  of  Tabor,  and  is  undistinguishable  with  the 
naked  eye. 

2.  The  Wadi  el  Bireh  and  Mount  Tabor. 

This  wadi  is  the  second  of  the  tributaries  of  the  Jordan 
which  come  in  from  the  west,  below  Lake  Tiberias.  It  takes 
its  name  from  the  village  of  Bireh,  which  it  passes,  and  begins 
at  the  southern  base  of  Tabor,  the  celebrated  mountain  which 
rises  on  the  western  boundary  of  the  Jordan  valley,  and  which 
is  the  more  carefully  to  be  observed,  because,  while  it  is  the  most 
characteristic  peak  which  dominates  over  the  Ghor,  it  forms  a 
barrier  between  it  and  the  great  plain  of  Jezreel  or  Ezraelon. 
This  slopes  gradually  to  the  Mediterranean,  and  is  traversed 
by  the  Kishon,  a  not  unimportant  stream,  whose  head  waters 
spring  from  the  north  and  west  base  of  Tabor,  giving  it  all  the 
character  of  a  watershed  mountain,  and  conferring  the  same 
physical  peculiarity  upon  the  surrounding  plain. 

Tabor,  whose  etymological  meaning  appears  to  be  umbilicus,1 
was  called  by  the  Greeks  Atabyrion,  and  is  designated  by  the 
Arabs  of  the  present  day  as  Jebel  Tor,  or  the  mountain.  And 
really  it  deserves  this  title  of  pre-eminence,  as  the  most  isolated2 
and  most  prominent  landmark  of  all  Galilee,  its  cone-shaped 
figure  being  seen  from  all  sides3  towering  above  the  plain,  and 
the  low  hills  which  stand  near  it.  Although  it  only  rises  about 
eight  hundred  feet  above  the  plain  called  Ard  el  Hamma,  at  its 
north-eastern  base ;  only  about  six  hundred  feet  above  Nazareth, 
a  little  to  the  north  of  west  of  it ;  although  it  rises  but  very 
slightly  above  Jebel  ed  Duliy  or  the  smaller  Hermon  at  the 
south,  and  reaches4  only  a  height  of  seventeen  hundred  and 
fifty  Paris  feet  above  the  sea ;  yet  its  relative  position  to  the 

1  Reland,  Pal.  pp.  331-336  ;  Rosenmuller,  Bibl.  Alterthk.  p.  105 ;  also 
Note  10,  p.  133  ;  von  Raumer,  Pal.  pp.  37-39. 

2  Burckhardt,  Trav.  p.  334. 

8  Roberts,  La  Terre  Sainte ,  liv.  ix.  Yign.  25  :  Le  Mont  Thabor. 

4  Russegger,  Reise,  iii.  p.  159  ;  Steinheil,  in  Gel.  Aus.  d.  Bayer.  Akad. 
d.  W.  1840,  No.  47,  p.  383. 



country  around  it  leaves  the  impression  that  it  is  twice  as  high 
as  it  really  is.1  Jerome  says  of  it :  Thabor,  terminus  Zabulon ; 
mons  in  medio  Galilcese,  mira  rotunditate,  sublimis,  etc.  It  was 
the  boundary  between  the  tribes  of  Zebulon  and  Xssachar  (Josh, 
xix.  12,  22).  The  Chisloth  Tabor  which  Joshua  mentions  was 
a  place  which  lay  at  the  north-west  base  of  the  mountain,  and 
was  sometimes  reckoned  in  the  territory  of  one  tribe,  and  some¬ 
times  in  that  of  another.2  In  Ps.  lxxxix.  12,  the  glory  of 
Tabor  is  compared  with  that  of  Hermon.  On  the  north  side, 
from  Khan  el  Tudshar,  Burckliardt  required  three  hours  to 
climb  the  mountain.  Wilson,  who  ascended  by  the  same  way, 
discovered  above  the  khan,  and  not  far  from  it,  a  spring,3  whose 
waters  flow  from  the  north-east  side  of  the  mountain,  wind 
around  its  base,  and  enter  the  right  fork  of  the  Wadi  el  Bireh 
on  the  south  side.  From  this  spring  the  observer  can  see  that 
Tabor  is  not  a  perfect  cone,  as  it  has  been  commonly  sup¬ 
posed,  but  that  its  longer  axis  extends  from  east  to  west.  The 
isolation  of  this  mountain  has  doubtless  been  the  reason  for  its 
being  made  by  the  earlier  ecclesiastics  the  scene  of  the  trans¬ 
figuration  of  the  Saviour,  described  in  Mark  ix.  2  :  66  Jesus 
taketh  with  Him  Peter,  and  James,  and  John,  and  leadeth 
them  up  into  a  high  mountain  apart  by  themselves.”  Beland4 
and  Wilson  have  placed  beyond  doubt  the  fact,  that  the  word 
u  apart”  refers  not  to  the  solitary  position  of  the  mountain,  but 
to  the  seclusion  of  the  disciples  themselves.  Both  endeavour 
strenuously  to  show  that  the  Mount  of  Transfiguration  was  in 
the  neighbourhood  of  Hermon  and  Caesarea  Philippi.  The 
New  Testament  does  not  throw  any  light  upon  the  matter ;  the 
very  earliest  legend  places  the  scene  of  the  transfiguration  on 
the  Mount  of  Olives,  near  Jerusalem.5  It  is  only  since  the 
time  of  Cyrillus  and  Jerome  that  Tabor  has  been  connected 
with  this  sacred  episode  in  the  life  of  the  Saviour.  Eusebius, 
the  predecessor  of  both,  describes  Tabor,  but  he  evidently 
knows  nothing  of  such  a  legend ;  for  assuredly  he  would  not 

1  Volney,  Reise,  ii.  p.  172. 

2  Keil,  Comment,  iiber  Josua,  pp.  338,  343. 

3  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  p.  331;  Wilson,  Lands  of  the  Bible,  ii.  pp. 
90,  107  ;  von  Raumer,  Pal.  p.  123. 

4  Reland,  Pal.  p.  335  ;  Wilson,  Lands  of  the  Bible,  ii.  p.  100,  Note  3. 

6  Itin.  Anton.  Avg.  et  Hierosolymitanum ,  ed.  Partliey,  1848. 


have  passed  by  it  in  silence,  if  the  tradition  existed  in  bis  time. 
The  historical  data  which  wre  possess,  show  that  the  summit  of 
the  mountain  was  employed,  without  any  intermission,  between 
the  times  of  Antiochus  Magnus,  218  B.c.,  and  the  destruction 
of  Jerusalem  under  Vespasian,  as  a  stronghold,  and  was  by  no 
means  the  scene  of  peace  and  solitude  whither  one  would  flee, 
anxious  to  escape  the  turmoil  of  the  world.  The  consecration 
which  quiet  and  seclusion  give  was  only  reached  after  the 
fortresses  which  once  crowned  its  summit  had  been  laid  low, 
and  all  Palestine  had  become  a  scene  of  desolation,  and  the 
home  of  idle,  legendary  fancies.  The  architectural  remains 
now  to  be  seen  upon  the  summit  confirm  the  account  of  the 
character  of  the  fortifications  which  it  once  sustained ;  and  in 
addition  to  that  evidence,  we  have  the  statements  furnished  bv 
the  crusaders  regarding  the  devastations  made  by  the  Saracens 
under  Sultan  Saladin  in  1187,  and  Sultan  Bibar  in  1263.  The 
latter  converted  the  whole  into  a  scene  of  utter  desolation ;  and 
so  it  remains  to  the  present  day.1 

The  most  common  ascent  of  Tabor  is  from  Nazareth,  the 
north-west.  side.  This  is  also  the  easiest  ascent,  because  the 
height  of  the  adjacent  plain  is  greater  than  on  the  north-east 
side.  The  path,  at  first  tolerably  level,2  and  then  ascending  in 
a  serpentine  course,  is  beautified  by  varieties  of  grass,  and  by 
overshadowing  oaks  and  thickets  of  bushes,  in  which  von 
Schubert3  heard,  on  the  19th  of  April,  countless  birds  sing¬ 
ing  their  morning  song,  awakening  within  him  the  solemn 
thought,  that  here  once  walked  Jesus.  Tabor  rose  before  him, 
arrayed  in  its  mantle  of  forests,  and  isolated  from  all  its  neigh¬ 
bours,  like  an  altar  in  a  plain ;  and  even  if  it  were  not  the 
hallowed  mountain  on  which  Peter  heard  the  voice  from 
heaven  (2  Pet.  i.  18),  yet  it  was  the  place  alluded  to  in  the 
inspired  words  of  the  Psalmist :  u  The  north  and  the  south, 
Thou  hast  created  them  ;  Tabor  and  Hermon  shall  rejoice  in 
Thy  name”  (Ps.  lxxxix.  12). 

At  the  left  of  the  road  running  north-westward  there  runs 
a  low  range  of  hills,  which  form  the  natural  connection  between 
Tabor  and  the  heights  around  Nazareth.  Over  the  top  of  this 

1  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  pp.  362-869. 

2  Ibid.  p.  350  ;  Wilson,  Lands  of  the  Bible ,  ii.  p.  100. 

s  Ton  Schubert,  Reise,  iii.  pp.  173-180. 



range  runs  a  roacl  which  was  taken  by  Robinson,  while  Wilson 
and  von  Schubert  pursued  the  one  first  named.  This  is  the 
great  Damascus  route,  and  passes  by  the  little  village  of  Daburi, 
the  Dabira  of  Eusebius  and  Jerome,  the  Dabaritta  of  Josephus, 
and,  it  may  be,  the  Deberath  which,  according  to  Josh.  xix.  12, 
belonged  to  Issachar.  And  since  the  popular  belief  has  trans¬ 
ferred  to  Tabor  the  scene  of  the  healing  of  the  son  who  was 
a  lunatic,  and  whose  father  brought  him  to  the  Saviour, 
Raphael  has  with  fine  judgment  and  taste  introduced  the  sum¬ 
mit  of  Tabor  and  the  angelic  personages  upon  it  into  his  picture 
of  the  Transfiguration,  and  secured  for  it  that  immortality 
which  so  perfect  a  work  of  art  can  give.  Yon  Schubert  tells 
us  that  the  direct  ascent  of  the  mountain  begins  near  the  ruins 
of  a  Christian  church,  and  is  at  first  steep  and  difficult.  One 
does  not  need  to  go  more  than  a  third  of  the  wTay  to  the  top 
before  he  discerns  the  round  wooded  summit  which,  when 
reached,  proves  to  be  a  small  plain  slightly  inclining  westward. 
The  path  up  is  extremely  circuitous,  and  in  some  places  too 
steep  to  ride  over.  It  usually  takes  from  an  hour  and  a  quarter 
to  an  hour  and  a  half  to  reach  the  summit.  Tabor  is  clothed 
with  woods  to  the  very  top — one  of  the  greatest  rarities  among 
the  mountains  of  Syria.1  The  dark  green  of  the  walnut,  the  slim 
azederach,  the  rose-bushes,  the  yellowish  white  styrax  blossoms, 
the  pistachio  and  oak  trees  ;  all  these  and  many  others  beautify 
the  path  to  the  very  summit,  where  a  view  of  immense  extent, 
embracing  Galilee,  Samaria,  Perasa,  and  extending  as  far  north¬ 
ward  as  the  snow-crowned  Hermon,  richly  repays  the  toil  of 
the  ascent. 

Yon  Schubert  ascertained  the  height  of  the  valley  in  which 
Nazareth  lies  to  be  eight  hundred  and  twenty-one  feet  above 
the  sea,  and  that  of  the  hills  around  to  be  from  fifteen  to 
sixteen  hundred  feet.  The  altitude  of  Esdraelon,  at  the  foot  of 
Tabor,  is  four  hundred  and  thirty-nine  feet  above  the  sea-level,' 
while  the  surface  of  Lake  Tiberias,  on  the  eastern  side  of  the 
plateau  on  which  Tabor  stands,  is  five  hundred  and  thirty-five 
feet  below  the  ocean-level.  The  summit  of  this  mountain  is, 
according  to  von  Schubert’s  measurement,  1748  feet  above  the 
sea,  or  about  2283  feet  above  Lake  Tiberias.  Yet  it  is  not  the 

1  Russegger,  Reise ,  iii.  p.  129. 

2  Yon  Schubert,  Reise,  iii.  pp.  1G8,  174,  177. 



absolute  height  of  Tabor,  but  its  position  in  relation  to  the  deep 
Jordan  valley,  and  the  great  plain  at  its  base,  that  gives  it  the 
appearance  of  an  altitude  which  it  does  not  possess.  And  one 
of  the  phenomena  most  striking  to  an  observer  standing  upon 
Mount  Tabor,  is  the  sharp  contrast  of  colour  presented  by  the 
deep  green  broad  plain  just  at  its  base,  to  the  blinding  white  of 
the  snow-crowned  Anti-Lebanon,  the  intense  blue  of  the  moun¬ 
tains  of  Ephraim  and  Judaea,  and  the  pale  green  of  those  of 
Gilboa.  In  this,  and  in  the  recollections  suggested  by  many 
places  in  view  from  the  summit,  and  in  the  inexhaustible 
varieties  of  natural  beauty,  there  is  enough  to  charm  the  spec¬ 
tator  and  bind  him  there  with  as  strong  a  fascination  as  any 
Alpine  prospect  could  do.1 

Towards  the  north-east  is  to  be  seen  the  distant  and  loftv 


J ebel  Sheikh ;  west  of  that,  the  high  range  of  the  Lebanon  ; 
still  nearer,  Jebel  Safed,  with  the  peak  which  the  city  of  Safed 
crowns.  Directly  at  the  foot  of  Tabor,  and  in  the  same  direc¬ 
tion,  is  the  most  northern  arm  of  the  great,  but  here  rolling, 
plain  of  Esdraelon,  extending  north-east  war  dly  as  far  as  to 
Kurun  Hattin,  and  north-westwardly  as  far  as  Sefurieh  and 
Kana  el  Jelil,  more  or  less  dotted  with  hills,  and  animated 
with  the  villages  and  encampments  of  the  Arabs.  Only  a 
small  portion  of  Lake  Tiberias  is  to  be  seen,  although  its  out¬ 
lines  are  distinctly  marked.  Behind  it,  and  farther  to  the 
north-east,  the  high  plateau  of  Jolan  is  clearly  seen ;  farther 
south,  the  flat  table-land  of  Hauran ;  and  still  farther  south, 
Bashan  and  the  mountains  of  Gilead,  which  in  winter  are 
capped  with  snow,  but  which  in  spring  display  even  at  a  dis¬ 
tance  the  same  green  pasture  lands  which  they  had  in  Moses’ 
times,  Moab  rises  sharply  up  from  the  horizon  like  an  impass¬ 
able  wall,  which,  however,  a  nearer  view  would  show  to  be  rent 
with  a  thousand  titanic  seams. 

In  the  direct  neighbourhood  of  the  mountain,  the  view 
north-eastwardly  takes  in  only  a  small  tract  of  the  Jordan 
valley ;  for  the  Ghor  is  hid  from  sight  by  its  high  western  wall. 
Even  on  the  south,  the  situation  of  Beisan  cannot  be  discerned, 
although  the  depressed  valleys  of  Wadi  el  Bireh  and  Wadi 

1  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  pp.  357-360 ;  Russegger,  Reise,  iii.  p. 
130  ;  Wilson,  Lands ,  etc.,  ii.  pp.  104-106  ;  Strauss,  Sinai  und  Golgotha, 
pp.  401-403 ;  Richter,  Wallfahrt.  p.  61 ;  (Tristram,  Land  of  Israel ,  p.  498.) 



Beisan  are  in  full  view,  and  although  the  wider  tract  through 
which  they  pass  before  entering  the  Jordan  may  claim  to  be 
considered  a  part  of  the  Jordan  valley  itself.  Of  the  Dead 
Sea  nothing  is  to  be  seen.  Towards  the  south,  Jebel  et  Dahi, 
or  the  smaller  Hermon,  shuts  off  the  prospect,  particularly  of 
the  mountains  of  Samaria ;  but  as  it  is  considerably  lower  than 
Tabor,  it  does  not  hide  the  heights  of  Gilboa.  Wilson  recog¬ 
nised  with  perfect  distinctness,  at  the  south  foot  of  Tabor,  the 
great  depression1  which  runs  from  the  village  of  Endor  south- 
eastwardly  to  the  Jordan.  He  heard  the  name  Mirzah  applied 
to  the  upper  part, — a  name  which  is  with  great  probability  con¬ 
nected  with  the  same  Meroz2  which  was  cursed  bv  Deborah 
(Judg.  v.  23).  Close  by  the  beginning  of  Mirzah,  whose 
waters  flow  into  the  Jordan,  lie  the  sources  of  a  small  tributary 
of  the  Kishon,3  Here,  therefore,  south  of  Tabor,  the  same 
phenomenon  repeats  itself  which  we  have  already  observed  in 
the  Ard  el  Hamma,  namely,  the  existence  of  the  watershed  line 
on  the  plains  which  lie  between  the  groups  of  mountains  just 
west  of  the  J ordan. 

On  the  northern  slope  of  the  smaller  Hermon,  or  Jebel 
Dahi,  are  to  be  seen  the  villages  of  Dahi,  Nain,  and  Endor^  the 
latter  of  which  have  a  deep  religious  interest.  They  lie  in  the 
upper  valley  of  the  Wadi  el  Bireli.  From  the  summit  of 
Tabor,  Jebel  Dahi  is  seen  to  have  two  peaks,  of  which  the 
northern  one  is  the  less  elevated  :  between  the  two  there  lies  a 
high  plain,  whence  runs  Wadi  Oeshe,  parallel  with  Wadi  el 
Bireh  :  in  the  summer  time  it  is  dry.  Still  farther  south  of 
Wadi  Oeshe  the  depression  of  the  Beishan  valley  is  to  be  seen, 
running  directly  west  from  the  Jordan  to  Ain  Jalud,  in  the 
plain  of  Esdraelon,  and  at  the  north-western  extremity  of  the 
Gilboa  ridge.  From  this  place,  too,  flows  westwardly  a  tribu¬ 
tary  of  the  Kishon  ;  and  here,  as  on  the  plains  farther  north, 
the  watershed  follows  the  plains  between  the  mountains. 

The  view  westward  from  Tabor  is  no  less  interesting  than 
that  southward.  Both  give  an  impression  with  regard  to  the 
topographical  character  of  the  country  far  more  accurate  and 
satisfying  than  could  be  gained  by  traversing  all  its  parts.  The 

1  Wilson,  Lands  of  the  Bible ,  l.c.  ii.  p.  106  ;  Robinson,  Bib.  Research. 
ii.  p.  355. 

2  Wilson,  Lands  of  the  Bible ,  ii.  pp.  90,  107.  8  Ibid.  pp.  89,  90. 



view  westward  extends  diagonally  across  the  broad  and  gently 
sloping  plain  of  Jezreel  or  Esdraelon,  the  Merj  Ibn  Amer  of 
the  Arabs,  about  twenty  miles  in  length  and  ten  in  breadth, 
according  to  Burckhardt.  At  its  western  end,  above  Lejun 
and  Megiddo,  tower  the  wooded  heights  of  Carmel,  whose 
altitude  is  almost  precisely  the  same  as  that  of  Tabor,  about 
1500  feet ;  whence  the  conjunction  of  their  names  in  Jer. 
xlvL  18.  The  northern  view  is  closed  by  the  hills  of  Nazareth  ; 
but  still  farther  north,  there  may  be  seen  in  the  extreme  dis¬ 
tance,  and  under  a  favourable  condition  of  the  atmosphere,  a 
line  of  silver — the  Mediterranean  Sea, 

From  this  broad  panoramic  picture  we  turn  to  study  more 
closely  the  place  where  we  stand — the  summit  of  Tabor.  Accord¬ 
ing  to  Burckhardt,1  it  is  from  one  to  two  miles  in  circumference, 
and  according  to  Robinson  it  is  an  elliptical  plain,  about  a  mile 
across  in  one  direction,  and  about  half  a  mile  in  another.  At 
the  south-western  part  there  are  a  number  of  walls  and  ruins 
to  be  seen ;  the  whole  top  is  overgrown  with  grass  and  bushes, 
but  the  growth  of  trees  does  not  extend  beyond  the  edge. 
Wilson  was  surprised  at  finding  a  patch  of  oats  upon  the 
top ;  probably  the  last  results  of  the  settlement  there  early  in 
the  century  of  a  number  of  Greek  families,  who  had  been 
driven  from  Hauran,  and  had  taken  refuge  on  the  summit  of 

The  ruins  on  the  top  belong  to  different  epochs.  Around 
almost  the  whole  of  the  edge  can  be  seen  the  remains  of  a  thick 
wall,  composed  of  great  stones,  many  of  which  are  bevelled. 
These  both  Robinson  and  Wilson  suppose  to  indicate  the  exist¬ 
ence  there  of  a  strong  fortress  at  a  very  early  day.  We  know 
that  even  in  the  time  of  Deborah  and  Barak,  Tabor  was  a  strong¬ 
hold,  for  here  ten  thousand  men  arrayed  themselves  against 
Sisera  (Judg.  iv.  6,  12).  Polybius  tells  us  that  Antiochus 
Magnus  fortified  the  summit  of  this  mountain,  218  B.c.  The 
principal  ruins  are  found  on  the  eastern  and  southern  sides  of 
the  summit,  and  consist  of  a  confused  mass  of  walls,  sepulchres, 
ditches,  arches,  and  foundations  of  houses,  many  of  the  stones 
bevelled.  There  is  to  be  seen  also  a  pointed  Saracenic  arch 
built  in  the  middle  ages.  It  is  called  the  gate  of  the  winds. 
At  the  time  of  the  Crusades,  churches  and  convents  were  on 
1  Burckhardt,  Trav.  p.  334 ;  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  p.  352. 



the  top  of  Tabor,1  and  Willibald  speaks  of  tlieir  existence  there 
as  early  as  the  eighth  century,2  although  there  is  no  proof  that 
the  Empress  Helena  ever  built  a  church  there,  as  she  is  asserted 
by  some  to  have  done. 

Burckhardt3  observed  that  during  the  most  of  the  summer 
the  summit  of  Tabor  was  surrounded  in  the  morning  with 
thick  clouds,  which  disappeared  later  in  the  day.  He  found  more 
dew  to  fall  there  than  anywhere  else  in  Syria.  Robinson  ob¬ 
served  the  same  phenomenon;  and  Maun drell 4  alludes  expressly 
to  the  amount  of  moisture  which  he  found  on  his  tent  in  the 
morning  in  the  plains  of  JezreeL  This  phenomenon  reminds 
us  of  the  often-mentioned  dew5  of  Hermon.  How  important  it 
was  regarded  to  the  existence  of  vegetation  on  the  neighbouring 
mountains  of  Gilead,  may  be  seen  by  the  prominence  given  to 
the  falling  of  dew  on  the  fleece  of  wool  before  Gideon’s  conflict 
with  the  Amalekites  (Judg.  vi.  37-39). 

3.  Wadi  Oesche  and  the  Jehel  ed  Dahi,  or  Little  Hermon . 

The  valley  known  as  Wadi  Oesche  is  completely  terra 
incognita:  of  its  lower  course  we  know  nothing  further  than 
that  Burckhardt6  passed  through  it  on  his  way  from  Endor  to 
Beisan.  It  runs  from  a  high  plateau  on  Little  Hermon,  be¬ 
tween  its  two  peaks,  and  passes  down  its  eastern  slope,  passing 
thence  on  to  the  Jordan.  Jebel  Dahi,  the  name  applied  by  the 
Arabs  to  the  mountain,  appears  to  derive  its  name  from  that  of 
the  village  of  Dahi  on  its  western  slope.  Burckhardt7  paid 
little  attention  to  the  physical  character  of  the  valley  as  he 
passed  through,  and  gave  no  names  of  localities ;  but  the 
researches  of  Robinson  did  not  leave  even  these  undetermined ; 
and  as  the  result,  we  have  on  Kiepert’s  map  the  villages  of 
Afleh,  Salam  el  Fuleh,  ed-Dahy,  Endor,  Nein,  Tumrah,  Um 
et  Taiyibeh,  Murussus,  and  Kumieh. 

1  Von  Raumer,  Pal.  p.  38. 

2  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  pp.  358,  359. 

3  Burckhardt,  Trav.  p.  335. 

4  Maundrell,  Journ.  Oxon.  p.  57. 

6  I  tin.  Antonini ,  ix.  fol.  mccxii.,  in  Ugolini,  Thes.  vol.  vii. ;  ibid.  edit. 
Julimagi  Audium,  fol.  8. 

6  Burckhardt,  Trav.  Gesenius’  ed.  ii.  p.  591 ;  Robinson,  Bib.  Research. 
ii.  p.  356. 

7  Burckhardt,  Trav.  p.  242. 



The  name  Little  Hermon,1  which  is  applied  to  Jehel  ed 
Dahi,  has  been  in  use  since  the  fourth  century.  It  is  not 
alluded  to  in  the  writings  of  the  Old  or  New  Testament. 
Jerome  alludes  to  it  twice,  and  erroneously  connects  with  it  the 
Ilermon  mentioned  in  Ps.  lxxxix.  12,  “  Tabor  and  Hermon 
shall  rejoice  in  Thy  name,”  having  supposed  that  the  conjunc¬ 
tion  of  the  two  names  was  meant  to  correspond  to  the  relation 
of  the  two  mountains,  which  stand  almost  side  by  side.  The 
Hermon  alluded  to  there,  as  well  as  that  spoken  of  in  the  plural 
form  in  Ps.  xlii.  6,  Hermonim  [translated  Hermonites  in  the 
Eng.  version],  refers  unquestionably  to  the  double-peaked  Jebel 
es  Sheikh.  The  false2  application  of  the  word  Hermon  quickly 
found  favour  with  the  ecclesiastics,  and  was  adopted  by  them ; 
but  the  Arabs  of  the  country  have  never  shown  the  slightest 
inclination  to  call  Jebel  Dahi  by  the  name  of  Hermon.  In  fact, 
the  mountain  is  neither  massive  nor  high,  neither  beautiful  nor 
fruitful ;  it  is  a  barren,  shapeless  mass,  its  highest  part  lying 
towards  the  west;  only  the  villages  on  its  slope  have  any 
historical  interest. 

Endor  is  the  ancient  place  of  the  same  name,  situated  in  the 
territories  of  Manasseh,  where  dwelt  the  soothsayer  or  u  witch” 
consulted  by  Saul  (1  Sam.  xxviii.  7).  It  was  also  the  place 
where  Sisera  wTas  overthrown  (Ps. 'lxxxiii.  9,  10).  Its  position 
has  been  discovered  by  recent  explorers. 

Nain,  now  a  little  hamlet,  just  south  of  the  last-mentioned 
place,  has  been  visited  by  pilgrims  since  the  time  of  the  Crusades, 
as  the  place  where  the  young  man  mentioned  in  Luke  vii.  11 

To  the  west,  but  very  near,  are  the  villages  of  Dahi,  from 
which  the  mountain  derives  its  name,  Fuleh3  and  Afuleh,  now 
in  a  state  of  great  decay,  and  standing  at  the  western  base,  on 
the  very  border  of  the  plain  of  Esdraelon,  and  at  the  line  of 
watershed  between  Tabor  and  Jebel  el  Dahi.  These  places 
bore  in  the  time  of  the  Crusades  the  name  Castellum  Faba; 
they  were  in  the  common  possession  of  the  Hospitallers  and 
the  Templars,  but  were  taken  and  sacked  in  1187  by  Sultan 

1  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  p.  326,  and  Rodiger,  Rec. ;  comp.  Rosen- 
miiller,  Bill.  Alter,  ii.  Rote  6,  pp.  135-137. 

2  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  pp.  319,  320. 

3  Ibid.  p.  328;  TYilken,  Gesch.  der  Kreutz.  iii.  pp.  231,  267. 



Saladin.  In  modern  times,  the  locality  which  Burckliardt1 
designates  by  the  name  of  Fele  was  the  scene  of  a  battle 
between  the  French  under  General  Kleber  and  the  Turks,  in 
which  an  army  of  2000  men  routed  a  Turkish  army  of  25,000, 
In  1843,  Wilson,  on  passing  through  this  neighbourhood,  dis¬ 
covered  the  traces  of  ancient  walls,  which  showed  him  con¬ 
clusively  that  Jebel  Dahi,  like  Tabor,  was  once  fortified  as  a 

Just  here  it  is,  at  the  western  angle  of  Little  Hermon,  that 
the  great  Damascus  road,  running  north-eastw~ard,  divides  into 
two  arms,  the  right  one  of  which  runs  along  the  east  foot  of 
Tabor  through  the  Wadi  Bireh,  to  the  Khan  et  Tujar  (this 
is  the  road  most  travelled3),  and  the  left  follows  the  north¬ 
western  side  (mostly  taken  by  Christian  pilgrims  who  wish  to 
visit  Nazareth  and  ascend  Tabor),  meeting  the  other  at  the 
khan,  and  thenceforward  making  but  one  road.  Tracing  the 
Damascus  road  in  the  reverse  direction,  it  runs  from  the  west 
side  of  Tabor  south-westward,  passing  the  villages  of  Fuleh 
and  Afuleh,  which  lie  on  the  eastern  margin  of  the  plain  of 
Jezreel,  on  the  line  of  watershed4  between  the  Mediterranean 
and  the  Jordan,  which,  as  has  already  been  remarked,  is  not 
to  be  traced  at  all  with  the  eye.  The  level  tracts  which  lie 
between  the  mountains  described  above,  do  not  show  even  the 
slightest  wave  of  land  which  would  direct  the  tendency  of  the 
streams  which  rise  there,  yet  they  form  the  natural  watershed 
notwithstanding.  The  village  of  Solam,5  south-east  of  Fuleh, 
on  the  last  southern  bluff  projecting  from  Little  Hermon,  and 
opposite  to  Zer’in,  at  the  head  waters  of  Wadi  Beisan,  is  an 
insignificant,  squalid  cluster  of  houses,  but  which,  from  its 
position,  commands  the  whole  plain  of  Jezreel  as  far  as  Carmel. 
It  is  the  Shunem  which,  with  Jezreel  and  Chesulloth,  was 
appointed  to  be  the  boundary  of  Issacliar  (Josh.  xix.  18); 
it  is  also  the  place  where  the  Philistines  encamped  when 
Saul  had  gathered  all  Israel  on  the  mountains  of  Gilboa, 
and  went  for  counsel  in  his  despair  to  the  sorceress  of  the 
neighbouring  village  of  Endor  (1  Sam.  xxviii.  4).  It  is  the 

1  Burckliardt,  Trav.  p.  339. 

2  Wilson,  Lands  of  the  Bible ,  ii.  p.  39. 

4  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  p.  331. 

*  Von  Raumer,  Pal.  p.  139. 

3  Ibid.  p.  90. 



Sunem  whence  the  fair  maid  Abishag  was  brought  to  David 
(1  Kings  i.  3)  ;  it  was  the  home,  too,  of  the  widow  who 
received  Elijah  in  so  hospitable  a  manner,  and  who  afterwards 
rode  across  the  plain  of  Esdraelon  to  Carmel,  to  implore  him 
to  restore  the  life  of  her  son  (2  Kings  iv.  8-25).  Eusebius 
speaks  of  Shulem  as  lying  five  Roman  miles  south  of  Tabor ; 
which  coincides  well  with  the  situation  of  the  modern  Solam, 
for  the  discovery  of  which  we  are  indebted  to  Monro. 



Burckhardt  entered  Wadi  Beisan,1  the  fourth  and  most 
southern  of  the  parallel  transverse  valleys,  and  passed  up  and 
down  the  whole  wadi,  without  discovering  the  spring  whence 
its  waters  flow.  Irbv  and  Mangles  visited  it  while  on  the  same 
road  which  Molyneux  took  from  Lake  Tiberias,  and  traversed2 
it  southwards  as  far  as  the  Jordan.  No  traveller  since  their 
day  has  followed  Wadi  Beisan  to  its  source,  and  it  remains  a 
field  for  new  discovery ;  for  the  greater  number  of  tourists  and 
explorers  have  merely  passed  by  the  spring  at  Jezreel,  lying 
on  the  confines  of  the  mountains  of  Gilboa  and  the  plain  of 
Esdraelon,  because  there  passes  the  great  Damascus  road  from 
Samaria  via  Jenin  to  Nazareth,  as  well  as  to  Tabor  and  Tiberias. 
From  this  point  we  become  acquainted  with  the  mountains  of 
Jilbon,  the  source  of  the  Beisan  stream,  which  springs  here 
from  its  northern  slope,  and  takes  its  course  through  the  Wadi 
Beisan.  There  is  also  a  road  which  leads  directly  from  Jenin 
north-eastwardly3  over  the  Gilboa  range  to  Beisan,  passing 
Fukua  and  Jilbon,  the  ancient  Gilboa.  At  the  west  end  of 
the  range  is  the  route  taken  by  von  Schubert4  and  Wilson, 
running  northward  to  Nazareth,  and  passing  Zer’in  near  the 

1  Burckhardt,  Trav.  Gesenius’  ed.  ii.  pp.  591-595. 

2  Irby  and  Mangles,  Trav .  pp.  301-304. 

3  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  pp.  316,  317. 

4  Yon  Schubert,  Reise,  iii.  pp.  164-168  ;  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii. 
pp.  315-331 ;  Wilson,  Lands  of  the  Bible ,  ii.  pp.  84-91,  303,  304. 

VOL.  II.  X 



fountain  of  Jezreel.  These  travellers  never  went  eastward 
into  the  Beisan  valley  farther  than  to  a  spring  of  which  I  shall 
speak  in  another  place.  The  exploration  of  Wadi  Beisan 
seems  to  he  the  more  desirable,  since  it  appears  to  be  the 
deepest  and  flattest  depression  which  connects  the  Mediterranean 
Sea  with  the  Jordan  valley. 

There  are  only  three  points  connected  with  the  present 
division  of  our  subject,  of  which,  in  the  absence  of  sufficient 
authorities,  I  venture  to  speak  :  the  first  is  Zer’in,  or  the 
ancient  Jezreel ;  the  second,  the  mountains  of  Gilboa;  and  the 
third,  the  city  of  Bethshean,  the  Scythopolis  of  the  Greeks,  and 
the  Beisan  of  the  present  day. 

1.  Zerin,  or  the  ancient  Jezreel;  the  Fountain  of  Jezreel,  in 
the  upper  part  of  Wadi  Beisan. 

The  junction  of  the  Beisan  valley,  which  at  its  western 
extremity  is  a  broad  plain,  with  the  eastern  part  of  the  plain  of 
Esdraelon,  is  so  perfect  that  the  watershed  cannot  be  detected 
with  the  eye,  and  justifies  the  application  of  the  term  u  Open 
Gate”1  applied  to  it  by  von  Raumer.  It  is  indeed  the  natural 
transition  between  the  great  plain  of  Esdraelon  and  the  flat  and 
plain-like  Wadi  Beisan.  The  pillars  of  this  gate  may  be  said  to 
be  Jebel  Dahi  or  Little  Hermon  on  the  one  side,  and  the  Gilboa 
mountains  on  the  other.  The  existence  of  a  broad  open  space 
connecting  Esdraelon  with  the  Jordan  valley,  is  in  entire  vari¬ 
ance  with  the  generally  accepted  notion  of  an  almost  unbroken 
Syrian  range  running  from  north  to  south.  Still  Robinson 
declares2  decisively  that  there  is  a  plain  of  from  two  to  three 
miles  in  width  lying  between  Gilboa  and  Little  Hermon,  and 
stretching  away  eastward  as  far  as  the  city  of  Beisan,  whose 
acropolis-like  site  he  could  distinctly  discern.  Standing  at  Zer’in, 
he  could  see  the  blending  of  the  two  plains  just  before  his  eyes. 

To  mark  the  precise  line  of  watershed  would  be  impossible, 
for  the  eye  can  detect  no  visible  sign  of  the  blending  of  the 
eastern  with  the  western  plains.  The  line  appears,  however, 
to  run  northward  from  Zer’in  past  the  villages  of  Fuleh  and 

Afuleh,  and  south  of  Zer  in  to  the  ruins  of  Sundela. 


Coming  from  the  south-west  on  the  high  road  from  Jenin, 

1  Yon  Raumer,  Pal.  p.  44. 

3  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  pp.  315-331. 



one  discovers,  after  passing  Sundela,  the  village  of  Zer’in, 
from  which  the  unbroken  plain  of  Esdraelon  or  Jezreel  extends 
westward1  as  far  as  the  eye  can  reach.  It  was  a  surprise  to 
Robinson,  on  reaching  this  place,  to  find  himself  standing  on 
the  brink  of  a  precipice  a  hundred  feet  in  height,  and  facing 
northward.  This  forms  the  abrupt  termination  of  the  moun¬ 
tains  of  Jilbon  or  Gilboa.  At  the  foot  lies  the  valley  of 
Eeisan,  a  plain  two  and  a  half  miles  in  width,  beyond  which 
rises  gradually  Jebel  Dahi  or  Little  Hermon. 

This  village  of  Zer’in,  at  present  in  decay,  and  consisting 
of  only  a  few  houses  standing  among  ruins,  lies  absolutely  as 
well  as  relatively  high,  and  commands  a  view  of  the  Beisan 
plain  on  the  east,  and  the  Esdraelon  plain  on  the  west.  The 
latter  derives  its  name  from  that  of  the  ancient  city  of  Jezreel 
(Josh.  xvii.  16),  where  it  is  spoken  of  as  lying  in  a  valley. 
The  J ezreel  of  the  Hebrews  became  the  Ezdraelon  of  the 
Greeks  and  the  Stradela2  of  the  middle  ages;  the  Arabs  of 
the  present  day  call  it  Zer’in.  We  know  from  the  account  of 
Eusebius  that  the  territory  designated  by  the  Hebrew  word 
Jezreel  was  exactly  coincident  with  that  called  by  the  Greeks 
Ezdraelon.  The  Arab  word  Zer’in  arose  naturally  from  the  old 
Hebrew  form,  since  the  last  syllable,  el ,  very  often  passes  over 
into  en  and  in, — for  example,  Israyen  instead  of  Israel, — the 
weak  aspirate  j  is  lost,  the  es  is  transposed  into  se  or  ze,  as  is 
very  often  the  case  in  Arabic  words.  The  crusaders  recognised 
the  identity  of  the  names,3  and  William  of  Tyre  says  that  in 
his  day  Jezreel  wTas  known  as  Gerinum. 

The  ancient  Hebrew  name  employed  by  Josephus  in  his 
Antiquities  has  continued  to  cling  to  the  city,  to  the  spring 
found  beneath  it,  and  to  the  valley  sloping  away  gently  toward 
the  east, — the  same  in  which  the  Midianites  encamped  (Judg. 
vi.  33).  The  Greek  name  Ezdraelon,  which  Josephus  does  not 
use,  is  now  applied  to  the  great  plain  stretching  away  west  to 
the  city  of  Jezreel  (Zer’in). 

This  name  Zer’in,  or  Zer’ain,  as  Wilson  writes  it,  seems 
to  have  more  relation  to  the  celebrated  spring  (Ain)  which 

1  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  p.  319. 

2  Itinerar.  Hierosol.  p.  586,  ed.  Parthey,  p.  276. 

3  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  p.  321 ;  Wilson,  Lands  of  the  Bible ,  ii. 

p.  87. 



is  found  near  the  village,  and  which  is  spoken  of  in  1  Sam. 
xxix.  1  as  a  place  of  encampment :  u  The  Philistines  gathered 
together  all  their  armies  to  Aphek ;  and  the  Israelites  pitched 
by  a  fountain  which  is  in  Jezreel.”  The  place  is  of  insignifi¬ 
cant  importance  compared  with  its  splendour  in  the  days  of 
Ishbosheth  the  son  of  Saul  (2  Sam.  ii.  2,  8,  9),  and  when 
Ahab  and  Jezebel  once  had  their  royal  residence  there,  and 
coveted  the  vineyard  of  Naboth,  and  brought  upon  themselves 
the  judgments  of  God.  Wilson  counted1  thirty  or  forty  huts 
in  the  present  village,  and  scattered  fragments  around,  among 
which  were  a  number  of  sarcophagi,  which  Robinson  had 
already  noticed,  and  held  to  be  a  mark  of  the  former  import¬ 
ance  of  the  place.  At  a  second  visit  Wilson  saw  eleven  of 
these,  and  held  them  to  be  the  work  of  the  ancient  Israelites.1 
He  also  discovered  traces  of  basaltic  quarries  which  had  not  been 
observed  before.  Among  the  ruins  he  found  an  ancient  square 
tower,  which  both  he  and  Robinson  ascended,  and  whence  an 
extensive  prospect  was  to  be  had.  At  the  north  was  Jebel 
Dahi  and  the  mountains  of  Nazareth  and  Galilee.  Westward 
the  Carmel  ridge  w^as  seen  stretching  to  the  sea  :  in  the  distant 
east  and  beyond  the  Jordan  the  mountain  walls  of  Bethaniyah 
(Bashan)  and  Ajlun  (Eglon)  were  to  be  descried.  Still 
nearer,  and  in  the  same  direction,  was  the  Tell  Beisan,  the 
acropolis  which  towers  above  the  site  of  the  ancient  Scythopolis. 
Westward,  and  at  about  the  same  distance,  Lejun  with  its 
minaret  could  be  seen  confronting  Carmel.  This  place  was 
the  ancient  Legio  ;  and  near  it  was  Maximianopolis,  which 
Jerome  locates  in  the  plain  of  Megiddo.  Each  of  these  places 
is  about  nine  miles  from  Zer’in,  the  intermediate  station.  The 
tower  referred  to  above  seems  to  be  a  monument  dating  from  a 
very  early  period, — perhaps  that  of  the  prophet  Elijah, — and 
may  be  the  very  one  mentioned  in  the  account  of  Joram’s 
sickness  at  Jezreel,  and  the  approach  of  Jehu,  his  adversary, 
over  the  plain  below.  The  latter  was  evidently  coming  up 
through  the  Wadi  Beisan,  the  ancient  Bethshean.  The  account 
is  given  in  2  Kings  ix.,  and  the  17th  verse  gives  a  very  distinct 
idea  of  one  topographical  peculiarity  of  the  ancient  city  of 
Jezreel.  The  allusion  is  in  the  following  words  :  u  And  there 
stood  a  watchman  on  the  tower  of  Jezreel,”  etc. 

1  Wilson,  Lands  of  the  Bible ,  ii.  pp.  87,  303. 



More  satisfactory  testimony  to  the  identity  of  the  place 
noticed  by  Robinson  and  Wilson  with  the  Jezreel  which 
flourished  three  thousand  years  ago,  can  hardly  be  imagined. 
The  argument  is  strengthened  by  a  word  or  two  occurring  in 
1  Kings  iv.  12,  where,  in  the  account  of  the  twelve  officials 
appointed  to  provide  for  the  wants  of  Solomon’s  household,  we 
read :  u  Taanach  and  Megiddo,  and  all  Beth-shean,  which  is 
by  Zartanah,  beneath  Jezreel ,”  etc.  The  last  words  exactly 
describe  the  impression  which  the  view  from  Zer’in  made  upon 
the  travellers  of  our  day  who  looked  down  from  it  upon  the 
depression  of  Wadi  Beisan.1 

Wilson  tells  us  that,  on  his  descent  from  Zer’in,  on  the 
northern  side  of  the  declivity,  he  came  unexpectedly  upon  a 
fountain  which  supplies  the  present  village  with  water.  This 
seemed  to  him  to  be  probably  the  spring  mentioned  in  1  Sam. 
xxix.  1,  around  which  Israel  encamped  when  the  Philistines 
came  up  into  the  plain  of  Jezreel  and  offered  battle.  This, 
however,  is  the  fountain  Ain  Jalud,  farther  east,  which 
Robinson  visited.  Wilson,  on  his  second  tour  of  exploration2 
in  that  neighbourhood,  was  struck  with  the  regular  descent  of 
the  valley  towards  the  east ;  he  discovered,  moreover,  several 
brooks  whose  waters  were  of  great  advantage  to  the  crop 
of  oats  which  he  found  growing  there.  The  soil  seemed  to 
him  to  be  formed  from  the  crumblino;  of  the  basaltic  rock 
of  the  neighbourhood,  and  to  owe  its  fertility  to  this  com¬ 

Robinson,  like  Wilson,  descended  the  north  face  of  the 
bluff  on  which  Zer’in  stands,  and  after  a  walk  of  twelve 
minutes  he  came  to  a  cluster  of  springs,  whose  waters,  after 
breaking  from  the  ground,  formed  for  a  little  distance  separate 
channels,  and  then  joined  in  a  common  brook.  The  name  which 
he  found  given  to  it  was  Ain  el  Meiyiteh,  or  the  Dead  Fountain,4 
because  it  used  to  dry  up.  At  the  time  of  his  visit,  however,  it 
had  been  dug  out,  and  its  waters  turned  to  a  useful  purpose  in 
irrigation.  This  seems  to  be  the  spring  which  Wilson  thought 
the  true  Ain  Jezreel  mentioned  in  the  Scriptures.  But  twenty 


1  See  Wilson,  Lands ,  etc.,  ii.  p.  87 ;  Dr  E.  G.  Schultz,  Zeitsch.  d . 
deutsch.  morgenl.  Gcs.  vol.  iii.  p.  48 ;  and  Gross,  Anmerk.  p.  58. 

2  Wilson,  Lands  of  the  Bible,  ii.  pp.  88,  303,  304. 

3  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  p.  324.  4  Ibid.  pp.  323-325. 



minutes’  distance  eastward  of  tliis,  Robinson  discovered  a  verv 
large  spring,  which  seemed  to  him  to  have  no  slight  claims  to 
recognition,  as  the  one  alluded  to  in  the  sacred  record.  It 
breaks  forth  from  beneath  a  wall  of  conglomerate  rock,  which 
forms  the  base  of  the  Gilboa  mountains  (Gilboa  signifies  in  the 
Hebrew  a  boiling1  spring)  ;  and  the  supposition  seems  a  natural 
one,  that  the  name  was  transferred  from  the  fountain  to  the 
range.  The  water  is  of  an  excellent  quality,  and  forms,  directly 
below  the  cleft  whence  it  flows,  a  fine  clear  pool,  full  of  fish. 
The  brook  which  forms  the  outlet  of  this  turns  the  wheel  of  a 
mill,  and  then  passes  on,  unquestionably  to  be  the  upper  waters 
of  the  Wadi  Beisan,  although  this  name  is  not  there  in  use. 
The  term  by  which  the  fountain  is  designated  by  the  Arabs 
is  Ain  Jalud,  i.e.  Goliath’s  Spring, — Jalud  being  the  Arabic 
form  of  Goliath.2  The  connection  of  the  name  of  the  giant 
who  encountered  David  with  this  spring  is  evidently  merely 
fanciful,  springing  from  the  fact  that  a  great  battle  was  once 
fought  here  between  the  Israelites3  and  the  Philistines  (1  Sam. 
xxix.  1,  11). 

This  spring  was  one  better  adapted,  from  its  ample  supply 
of  water,  to  be  the  camping-place  of  the  Hebrew  army,  than 
the  one  found  near  the  village  of  Zer’in.  And  the  place  which 
witnessed  the  death  of  Saul  and  Jonathan  (1  Sam.  xxxi.  1-4) 
has  not  been  allowed  to  remain  there  many  centuries  without 
drawing  other  armies  to  its  neighbourhood.  Its  situation  at  the 
intersection  of  the  roads  running  north  and  east,  as  well  as  its 
ample  supplies  of  water,4  made  this  place  a  famous  resort  in  the 
time  of  the  Crusades ;  for  by  this  spring  passed  the  nearest 
and  the  most  comfortable  road  for  the  Saracen  hordes  under 
Saladin  to  come  up  from  the  Jordan  after  crossing  from  Persea. 
At  this  spring  they  could  encamp  before  entering  the  mountain 
land  of  Galilee  and  Samaria,  and  rest  themselves  and  prepare 
for  battle.  William  of  Tyre,  the  chronicler  of  the  Crusades, 
was  familiar  with  the  fact  that  this  great  fountain,  then  called 
Zubania,  was  the  source  of  the  Wadi  Beisan  stream;  for  he 

1  Rosenmiiller,  Bibl.  Alterthk.  ii.  p.  111. 

2  Bahaeddin,  Vita  Saladini ,  p.  53 ;  Wilken,  Gesch.  cl.  Kreuzzilge ,  iii. 
p.  231,  Note  146. 

3  Itinerar.  Antonini  Augusti ,  etc.,  ed.  Parthey,  p.  276. 

4  Zeitsch.  d.  deutsch.  morgenl.  Ges.  vol.  iii.  p.  48. 



not  only  speaks  distinctly  of  it,  but  be  confirms  bis  testimony, 
by  stating  that  the  pool  which  it  fed  was  so  full  of  fish  as  to 
supply  the  troops  which  were  with  him  with  a  full  meal.  I 
have  already  alluded  to  Robinson’s  interesting  discovery  of  fish 
in  the  same  waters. 

The  earliest  account  of  the  division  of  the  conquered 
country  among  the  tribes  (Josh.  xvii.  11),  informs  us  that 
Beisan  or  Bethshean  (Scythopolis),  the  possession  of  Manasseh, 
though  within  the  limits  of  Issachar,  was  settled  by  a  Canaan- 
ite  population,  which  Manasseh  was  too  weak  to  conquer  and 
to  expel1  (Judg.  i.  27).  The  Canaanites  wrere  dwelling  at  that 
time  in  several  cities  of  that  region — Endor,  Thaanach,  and 
Megiddo — as  well  as  Bethshean.  At  that  period  of  the  ascend¬ 
ancy  of  the  tribes  in  actual  possession,  the  descendants  of 
Joseph,  wTho  were  divided  into  two  tribes,  Ephraim  and  half 
Manasseh,  were  very  much  discontented  with  the  portion 
assigned  them  (Josh.  xvii.  14-18),  because,  although  a  nume¬ 
rous  people,  they  had  but  one  share.  The  result  of  their  com¬ 
plaint  was,  that  Joshua  recognised  the  justice  of  their  claims, 
and  bade  them  go  and  cut  down  the  forests,  and  make  for 
themselves  a  place  in  the  country  of  the  Perizzites  and 
Rephaites.  Their  answer  was  :  u  The  hill  is  not  enough  for 
us ;  and  all  the  Canaanites  that  dwell  in  the  land  of  the  valley 
have  chariots  of  iron,  both  they  that  are  of  Bethshean  and  her 
towns,  and  they  who  are  of  the  valley  of  Jezreel.”  From  this 
and  from  what  follows,  it  seems  clear  that  the  mountains  of 
Gilboa  are  here  meant,  extending  as  they  do  from  Bethshean 
(Beisan)  to  Jezreel,  and  that  the  broad  gentle  slope  from  Beisan 
to  Jezreel,  sinking  into  the  plain  itself,  is  set  in  direct  contrast 
with  the  u  land  of  the  valley.”  It  was  only  this  plain  of 
Jezreel,  and  that  north  of  Lake  Huleh,  that  was  then  accessible 
to  the  chariots  of  the  Canaanites.  It  was  in  this  plain  of 
Jezreel  that  Joram  king  of  Israel,  and  Ahaziah  king  of  Judah, 
went  forth  in  chariots  to  meet  the  enemy :  it  was  here  that 
Jehu  passed  in  a  chariot  to  Samaria  to  meet  the  faithful 
Jehonadab  (see  2  Kings  ix.  21,  x.  15).  And  Wilson,2  in 
leaving  the  hilly  district  of  Judaea,  utterly  unfitted  for  vehicles, 
and  entering  the  plain  of  Esdraelon  at  Jenin,  was  surprised 

1  Keil,  Commentar  zu  Josua ,  p.  318. 

2  Wilson,  Lands  of  the  Bible ,  ii.  p.  303. 



to  see  how  entirely  it  differed  from  the  country  which  he  had 
previously  traversed,  and  how  easily  it  might  be  crossed  by 
excellent  highways,  if  the  custom  of  the  country  admitted  of 
the  use  of  vehicles.  In  the  days  of  the  Jews,  the  plain  was  so 
associated  with  the  use  of  the  chariot,  that  this  term  became 
to  a  certain  extent  an  exponent  of  the  power  of  the  people 
inhabiting  the  plain  :  the  chariot  was  the  glory  of  Ephraim,  as 
the  horse  was  of  Judah  (Zech.  ix.  9,  10). 

There  is  this  remarkable  inference  to  be  drawn  from  the 
passage  cited  above  from  the  book  of  Joshua,  that  at  the  time 
of  the  Israelitish  invasion,  the  mountains  of  Gilboa  and  the 
country  adjacent  were  covered  with  dense  forests,  of  which  not 
a  trace  now  remains,  and  which  made  them  a  more  secure 
asylum  for  those  who  sought  protection,  than  open  fields  could 
be.  And  it  seems  to  have  been  a  shrewd  device  of  the  great 
Hebrew  chieftain,  the  counselling  the  descendants  of  Joseph  to 
go  up  into  the  mountain  land  ;  for  it  would  lead  to  the  laying 
bare  of  the  whole  country,  and  would  compel  the  original  in¬ 
habitants  to  come  out  from  their  places  of  refuge,  and  make 
open  resistance  to  the  invaders.  It  is  unquestionable,  that  the 
mountains  of  Gilboa  present  a  very  different  appearance  to 
that  of  Joshua’s  time.  And  when  Wilson  emerged  at  Jenin 
from  the  mountain  country  of  the  south,  and  entered  the  most 
fertile  district  of  all  Palestine,  the  plain  of  Esdraelon,  in  all  the 
broad  expanse  over  which  his  eye  ranged,  there  was  not  a  single 
tree  to  be  seen.1 

2.  rPlie  Mountains  of  Gilboa ,  now  Jelbun  ( Jelbon ),  or 

Jebel  Fukua. 

Unimportant  as  the  mountains  of  Jelbon  may  seem  to  be 
at  the  present  time,  in  consequence  both  of  their  physical  in¬ 
significance  and  the  uninteresting  character  of  the  few  people 
who  inhabit  them,  both  of  which  circumstances  have  caused 
the  range  to  be  entirely  overlooked  by  travellers ;  yet,  to  one 
interested  in  Hebrew  history,  these  mountains  have  even  a 
classical  interest.  Who  could  pass  by  the  range,  and  not  think 
with  tenderness  of  the  friendship  of  David  and  Jonathan,  and 
recall  with  painful  interest  the  song  of  the  former,  when  the 
latter  had  perished  in  the  battle  of  the  Philistines :  a  The  beauty 

1  Wilson,  Lands  oj  the  Bible ,  ii.  p.  85. 



of  Israel  is  slain  upon  thy  high  places :  how  are  the  mighty 
fallen !  Saul  and  Jonathan  were  lovely  and  pleasant  in  'their 
lives,  and  in  their  death  they  were  not  divided.”  The  impre¬ 
cation  of  ver.  21  is  also  found  in  the  same  dirge:  “Ye  moun¬ 
tains  of  Gilboa,  let  there  be  no  dew,  neither  let  there  be  rain 
upon  you,  nor  fields  of  offerings,”  etc. ;  for  the  Philistines  had 
contended  with  Israel,  the  latter  had  been  vanquished,  and  Saul 
and  Jonathan  had  fallen  upon  the  mountains.  Saul’s  armour 
was  suspended  in  Ashtaroth,  and  his  body  hung  upon  the  walls 
of  Bethshean  (1  Sam.  xxxi.  1,  10).  Afterwards,  his  bones, 
together  with  those  of  Jonathan,  were  brought  by  the  royal 
Psalmist  and  hero,  David,  to  Zelah,  in  the  territory  of  Benjamin, 
and  buried  in  the  grave  of  his  father  Kish  (2  Sam.  xxi.  14). 

As  one  passes  on  to  the  mountain-land  of  Samaria,  through 
the  narrow  pass  in  which  Jenin  (Ginoea)  lies,  at  the  south¬ 
east  bend  of  the  plain  of  Esdraelon,  a  walk  of  two  hours 
brings  him  to  Zer’in,  on  the  north-west  bluff  of  the  mountains 
of  Gilboa.  From  that  point  the  range  runs  in  a  south-easterly 
direction,  till  it  is  terminated  by  the  steep  wall  at  whose  foot 
runs  the  Jordan.  Coming  from  Jenin  to  Zer’in,  one  has  on 
the  right  hand  the  southerly  slope  of  Gilboa  in  view ;  and  the 
brooks  which  rise  there  flow  westward  into  theKisbon,  although 
in  the  summer  they  are  all  dry.  The  streams  which  flow  into  the 
Jordan  on  the  other  side  are  entirely  unknown.  Burckhardt1 
speaks,  indeed,  of  a  W adi  el  Maleli ;  but  no  one  has  visited  it. 

Directly  after  emerging2  from  the  defile,  the  traveller  sees, 
across  the  south-eastern  bend  of  the  fruitful  plain  of  Esdraelon, 
the  whole  Gilboa  range,  along  whose  western  flank  the  road 
northward  leads,  passing  a  number  of  uninteresting  spurs  or 
bluffs.  The  mountains,  or  more  strictly,  the  hills  of  Gilboa, 
exhibit  nothing  striking  or  pleasing  in  their  general  contour : a 
they  are  not  lofty ;  they  exhibit  very  little  green  pasture-land, 
and  no  tilled  fields ;  while  forests  are  utterly  wanting.  The 
broad  and  naked  strips,  and  steep  barren  escarpments  of  lime¬ 
stone,  are  far  more  obvious  to  the  eye  than  the  patches  of 
green.  The  line  of  elevation  seems  to  be  a  south-easterly  con¬ 
tinuation  of  that  of  the  Carmel  range ;  and  with  the  exception 

1  Burckhardt,  Trav.  p.  345. 

2  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  318. 

3  Wilson,  Lands  of  the  Bible ,  ii.  pp.  85,  86. 



of  one  or  two  breaks,  but  a  few  miles  across,  the  chain  may  be 
said  to  be  complete,  from  the  Carmel  promontory  to  the  Ghor. 
Northward  of  this  continuous  line  there  was  unquestionably, 
at  a  very  early  period,  a  lake  of  considerable  magnitude,  whose 
waters  broke  through  the  place  where  now  the  channel  of  the 
Kishon  is,  leaving  the  fertile  plain  of  Jezreel  behind.  The 
road  from  Jenin  to  Zer’in  passes  the  places  Araneh,  Jelameh, 
and  Sundela.1  Rounding  the  northern  end  of  the  range,  there 
is  to  be  seen  first  the  village  "of  Nuris,  then  Mezar  or  'VVezar, 
having  at  a  distance  the  look  of  a  fortress,  and  farther  south¬ 
east  the  village  of  Arabbunah.  Still  farther  in  the  same 
direction,  but  upon  the  southern  slope,  lies  Fukua,2  which 
gives  the  modern  name  to  the  range.  Robinson  locates  the 

O  O 

village  of  Jelbon  (Gilboa),  whose  existence  was  not  known 
before  his  day,  and  whose  name  is  identical  with  the  former 
designation3  of  the  mountains,  on  the  northern  side ;  but  this 
was  a  mistake,  and  the  later  investigations  of  Schultz  have 
shown  conclusively  that  it  was  on  the  southern  slope. 

The  traveller  last  mentioned  has  devoted  much  attention 
to  the  geography  of  Gilboa,  in  order  to  throw  light  upon  the 
places  mentioned  in  the  book  of  Judith.  Although  recognising 
the  lack  of  an  authentic  historical  character  in  this  apocryphal 
book,  yet  he  supposed,  with  good  reason,  that  the  author  in  his 
topographical  descriptions  wrould  have  adhered  closely  to  literal 
fact.  The  result  of  his  investigations  showed  him  that  his 
conjecture  was  well  founded;  that  the  author  of  the  book 
of  Judith  was  thoroughly  acquainted  with  the  geography  of 
Gilboa.  Looking  for  Bethulia,4  the  scene  of  the  heroine’s 
career,  he  was  directed5  to  the  village  of  Beit-IlfahG  (or  Ilua), 
which  seemed  to  him  to  be  the  same  word  slightly  changed. 
It  lies  on  the  northern  slope  of  the  mountain,  as  one  goes  from 
Fukua  towards  the  Beisan  valley.  Its  whole  geographical 
character  convinced  him  of  the  truth  of  his  discovery.  The 

1  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  p.  319.  2  Ibid.  p.  31G. 

3  Ibid.  pp.  316,  317.  See  also  Eosenmiiller’s  Bib.  Alterthk.  ii.  p.  Ill ; 

Eeland,  Pal.  p.  344,  and  cap.  xiii. 

4  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  pp.  323-356. 

6  Yon  Raumer,  Beitrdge  zur  bibl.  Geog.  p.  19,  art.  Belneir. 

G  E.  G.  Schultz,  Mutt,  iiber  eine  Reise  in  Samaria ,  in  Zeilsch.  d.  Deutsch. 
Morgenl.  Ges.  vol.  iii.  pp.  48,  49;  and  Gross,  AnmerJc.  pp.  58,  59. 



Belmali  of  the  book  of  J udith,  Schultz  supposes  he  has  found 
in  the  modem  Bel’ameh,  near  Jenin.  Dothan,  or  Dothaim, 
which  was  near  Belmali,  was  also  the  object  of  his  careful 
search.  The  location  has  not  been  with  exactness  ascertained ; 
but  Schultz  supposes  it  to  have  been  south-west  of  Jenin, 
where  the  plain  of  Esdraelon  enters  for  a  little  way  the  moun¬ 
tains  of  Samaria.  Dothan,  it  will  be  remembered,  lay  upon 
the  highway  which  the  Xshmaelite  merchants  were  compelled 
to  travel ;  for  it  was  while  they  were  in  their  regular  march 
that  they  bought  Joseph  of  his  brethren  (Gen.  xxxvii.  17). 
Gross,1  in  his  remarkably  close  critical  observations,  conjectures 
that  the  old  highway  running  from  Samaria  northward  did  not 
pass,  as  now,  Engannin  (Josh.  xix.  21),  the  present  Jenin,2 
according  to  Joshua,  but  by  Dothan.  See  Gen.  xxxvii.  17, 
and  the  account  of  the  Syrian  invasion,  2  Kings  vi.  13.  The 
discovery  of  the  site  of  Dothan  is  one  well  worthy  of  the 
attention  of  future  explorers.  Unfortunately,  Schultz  was  not 
able  to  visit  the  place  which  has  been  conjectured  with  the 
most  probability  to  have  been  the  spot.3 

3.  Beisan  ( Bethshean ,  Bethshan ,  Scytliopolis). 

We  turn  now  from  the  Gilboa  range  and  the  fountain  of 
Jezreel,  and  pass  south-eastward  through  the  u  Great  Gate” 
leading  down  to  the  Jordan,  for  there  lies  the  third  object  of 
our  special  inquiry.  This  is  the  site  of  the  city  of  Beisan,  the 
renowned  Scythopolis  of  the  past,  whose  discovery  and  identifi¬ 
cation  we  owe  to  Burckliardt. 

Seetzen4  has  already  descried  the  place  from  Wadi  Jabis 
beyond  the  Jordan,  a  deep  gorge  which  lies  directly  opposite  to 
Beishan,  and  of  which  he  says  that  it  is  the  natural  boundary 
between  Botthin  and  Ejlan, — a  circumstance  which  must  have 
given  to  Beisan,  situated  as  it  was  at  the  outlet  of  this  portal 

1  Yon  Raumer,  Pal.  p.  149,  Note  107,  and  Append,  pp.  21,  22.  See 
Gross,  AnmerJc.  as  above,  p.  58. 

2  Robinson,  Bib.  Research,  ii.  315. 

3  Since  these  pages  were  written,  the  site  of  Dothan  has  been  definitely 
ascertained  by  Robinson  and  Yan  der  Yelde.  The  hill  on  which  it  lay  is  s.w. 
of  Jenin,  about  five  miles  from  it,  and  near  the  southern  margin  of  the 
plain  of  Esdraelon.  See  also  Tristram  (p.  132),  who  there  saw  a  long  cara¬ 
van  of  mules  and  asses,  laden,  on  their  way  from  Damascus  to  Egypt. — Ed. 

*  Seetzen,  Mon.  Corresp.  xviii.  p.  423. 



to  northern  and  southern  Peroea,  great  historical  importance. 
The  Syrian  hordes,  from  the  earliest  times  down  to  Saladin, 
understood  perfectly  the  value  of  that  portal  to  Samaria  and 
Galilee.  Situated  as  Beisan  is  in  the  Ghor,  midway  between 
Lake  Tiberias  and  the  Dead  Sea,  at  the  most  fertile  and  most 
accessible  spot  on  the  western  bank,  at  the  junction  of  the  road 
running  eastward  and  westward  with  that  running  north  and 
south,  it  must  always  have  been  a  place  of  much  consequence 
and  influence.  That  it  has  not  retained  that  place  up  to  the 
present  time,  is  due  to  the  want  of  stability  in  the  political 
relations  of  the  country,  and  to  the  frequent  incursions  of  Arab 
robbers  who  come  into  Palestine  from  the  desert,  choosing  as 
their  highway  this  very  accessible  one  through  the  Wadi 
Beisan,  the  most  convenient  south  of  Lake  Tiberias.  Since 
there  is  not  now,  and  for  centuties  has  not  been,  anything 
to  hinder  them,  tribes  of  wandering  Beduins  have  for  ages 
swept  through  that  open  gate  like  swarms  of  grasshoppers, 
and  have  become  by  successive  stages  the  possessors  of  the 
whole  country,  while  the  primitive  inhabitants  have  betaken 
themselves  to  the  walled  cities.  And  of  the  ancient  glory 
which  Beisan  once  had,  the  largest  and  most  important  of  the 
cities  which  formed  the  Decapolis,  and  the  seat  of  a  bishopric 
(afterwards  transferred  to  Nazareth),  nothing  now  remains  but 
a  mass  of  ruins  and  a  few  squalid  houses.  Even  in  1182  the 
once  lordly  Scythopolis  had  become  a  small  and  unimportant 
place ;  still  it  was  strong  enough  to  withstand  successfully 
the  first  assault  of  the  Sultan  Saladin,1  who  was  compelled, 
after  beleaguering  it,  to  raise  the  siege.  Yet  the  place  fell 
before  his  repeated  attacks,  and  the  inhabitants  were  com¬ 
pelled  to  take  refuge  in  Tiberias,  whose  walls  they  deemed 
more  secure.  Saladin,  on  his  entrance,  found  the  city  desolate. 
The  archbishop  of  Tyre 2  tells  us  that  in  his  time  the  place  was 
beautified  wTith  a  few  elegant  buildings  of  marble,  testifying  to 
its  former  splendour,  but  that  the  place  consisted  mainly  of  a 
cluster  of  mean,  liut-like  houses,  built  upon  swampy  ground, 
and  that  the  number  of  inhabitants  was  very  small.  At  a  later 
period  the  place  is  scarcely  named.  Edrisi3  tells  us  that  it  was 

1  Wilken,  Gesch.  d.  Kreiizzuge,  iii.  pp.  210,  230. 

2  Will.  Tyr.  Histor.  lib.  xxii.  fol.  1037. 

3  Edrisi,  in  Janbert,  T.  i.  p.  239. 



an  insignificant  village  in  his  day,  that  several  date  trees  grew 
there,  and  much  of  the  samanie  (a  kind  of  rush),  which  the 
people  used  to  weave  into  mats.  Abulfeda1  speaks  of  the 
place  under  the  name  of  Baisan  (the  word  Scythopolis  was 
utterly  unknown  to  the  orientals),  and  says  that  it  was  very 
small,  unencompassed  by  a  wall,  but  well  watered,  and  sur¬ 
rounded  by  a  very  fertile  district. 

Recent  travellers  describe  its  condition  as  very  little  im¬ 
proved.  Burckhardt2  merely  remarks  of  it,  that  it  lies  on  a 
tolerably  elevated  position  on  the  west  side  of  the  Ghor,  where 
the  mountain  range  sensibly  falls  off  in  height,  and  that  it 
marks  an  open  gateway  to  the  central  part  of  the  country. 
About  an  hour’s  distance  south  of  the  village  the  mountain 
chain  begins.  The  ancient  city,  he  says,  was  watered  by  a 
stream  now  called  Moiet-Beisan,  i.e.  the  waters  of  Beisan, 
which  distributes  itself  through  a  number  of  small  channels. 
Burckhardt  found  the  ruins  of  Scythopolis  to  be  extensive  ;  it 
was  originally  built  along  the  banks  of  the  stream,  and  could 
not  have  been  less  than  three  miles  in  circumference.  The 
only  monumental  relics  which  he  was  able  to  discover  consisted 
of  black  hewn  stones,  foundations  of  houses,  and  fragments  of 
pillars.  He  saw  only  one  shaft  still  standing.  In  one  of  the 
little  hollows  formed  by  the  stream  he  found  a  dam,  constructed 
with  some  skill,  and  on  the  left  bank  there  stood  a  khan  for 
the  accommodation  of  caravans  on  the  way  from  Jerusalem 
to  Damascus. 

The  inhabitants  of  the  seventy  or  eighty  houses  still  standing 
in  Beisan  Burckhardt  found  in  a  very  sad  condition,  being 
greatly  exposed  to  the  predatory  incursions  of  Arabs  from  the 
Ghor,  and  compelled  to  pay  a  severe  tribute.  The  contrast  is 
most  striking  between  the  present  and  the  past  of  this  now 
insignificant  place.  It  attained  great  magnificence  at  the 
instance  of  Pompey  the  Great,  who  passed  through  on  his 
tour  of  conquest,  and  left  on  the  east  bank  of  the  Jordan  and 
in  this  city  of  Scythopolis  the  marks  of  his  power  and  taste. 
His  successors  lavished  even  greater  treasures  in  the  construc¬ 
tion  of  other  Syrian  cities,  of  which  we  have  the  distinct  traces 
in  the  admirably  preserved  monuments  east  of  the  Jordan, 

1  Abulfedse  Tab.  Syria,  ed.  Koehler,  p.  84. 

2  Burckhardt,  Trav.  pp.  341-344. 



while  the  splendour  of  Scytliopolis  has  utterly  departed.  Among 
the  ruins  the  theatre  is  the  best  preserved,  although  it  is  wholly 
overgrown  with  bushes  and  weeds.  Irby  and  Mangles1  took 
accurate  measurements  of  it,  because  the  arrangements  of  it 
were  peculiar.  The  front  measured  a  hundred  and  eighty  feet 
across.  In  one  of  the  most  hidden  vomitoria  there  lay  aheap  of 
skulls,  in  which  vipers  were  seen  curled.  No  one  can  conjecture 
how  many  Christians  have  here  met  the  fate  of  martyrdom. 

The  city  walls,  and  the  former  fortress,  the  Acropolis  of 
the  place,  are  still  to  be  seen.  North-east  of  the  latter,  and 
outside  of  the  walls,  are  several  interesting  tombs,  whose  stone 
doors  are  still  secured  in  their  old  places  by  the  stone  rivets 
which  w^ere  originally  inserted  for  that  purpose  (see  1  Kings 
iv.  13).  In  some  of  these  tombs  sarcophagi  have  been  found, 
and  triangular  niches  in  which  to  set  the  sepulchral  lamps. 
South-west  of  the  Acropolis  there  exists  a  fine  Roman2  bridge, 
and  beyond  it  a  paved  via  militarise  unquestionably  a  portion  of 
the  great  Damascus  road  running  to  Samaria  and  Jerusalem. 

The  present  condition  of  Beisan  has  been  depicted  by 
Molyneux  since  Burckhardt  and  Irby  and  Mangles  were  there ; 
but  there  is  no  detailed  report  of  the  aspect  of  the  ruins,  since 
very  few  travellers  pass  by  it,  preferring  the  safer  ford  of  the 
Jordan  at  Jericho,  or  that  below  Lake  Tiberias,  when  taking 
their  excursions  into  the  country  east  of  the  river.  The  Arabs, 
too,  in  this  neighbourhood,  are  very  bold  and  troublesome  to  tra¬ 
vellers.  C.  de  Bertou3  is  the  only  traveller  who  has  studied  the 
whole  of  the  middle  Jordan  valley,  but  he  was  unable  to  make 
any  stay  at  Beisan,  and  hence  we  lack  a  description  from  his  pen.4 

In  Hebrew  history  this  place  was  known  as  Beth-sean, 
Beth-sliean,5  and  Beth-shan,  i.e.  house  of  peace ;  and  Beisan 
is  evidently  a  mere  corruption  of  the  older  word.  At  the 
time  of  the  Israelitic  invasion  of  Canaan,  Beth-shean  is  men¬ 
tioned  as  standing  near  the  wooded  range  which  belonged 

1  Irby  and  Mangles,  Trciv.  p.  301.  2  Ibid.  p.  303. 

3  C.  de  Bertou,  Mem.  sur  la  Depression ,  in  Bulletin  de  la  Soc.  Geog.  de 

Paris ,  T.  xii.  p.  151. 

4  See  in  appendix  to  this  volume  an  account  of  Tristram’s  visit  to 

5  Itosenmiiller,  Bib.  Alterthh.  ii.  Note  3,  p.  105 ;  and  Gesenius’  Note  to 
Burckhardt,  p.  1056. 



to  Manasseli ;  but  although  given  to  this  tribe,  it  never  came 
into  their  formal  possession,  owing  to  its  strength.  The  people 
were  merely  compelled  to  pay  a  certain  tribute,  they  were  never 
reduced  to  actual  submission  (Josh.  xvii.  11,  16;  Judg.  i.  27). 
Only  at  the  time  of  the  Philistines’  victory  over  Saul  did  Beth- 
shean  fall  into  the  power  of  these  enemies  of  Israel  (1  Sam. 
xxxi.  10)  ;  but  during  the  reign  of  Solomon  it  had  been 
wrested  from  the  Philistines,  as  may  be  inferred  from  1  Kings 
iv.  12.1 

Soon  after  the  captivity,  the  name  Beth-shean  fell  into 
disuse,  and  the  name  Scythopolis  took  its  place.  The  origin  of 
the  latter  word  is  uncertain.  I  am  not  disposed  to  coincide 
with  the  theories2  which  attribute  it  to  an  invasion  of  Scythians 
into  Palestine,  of  which  history  contains  no  record ;  and 
although  Zephaniah,  Joel,  and  Jeremiah  (see  the  latter,  chap, 
iv.  5,  6)  speak  indefinitely  of  the  attack  of  certain  powerful 
enemies  from  a  distant  country,  yet  there  is  little  reason  to 
think  that  they  were  Scythians.  At  all  events,  whatever  may 
have  been  the  origin  of  the  name  Scythopolis,  it  had  no  per¬ 
manent  possession,  and  yielded  in  favour  of  the  Arabic  cor¬ 
ruption  of  the  ancient  and  scriptural  Beth-shean.3 

After  the  expedition  of  Pompey  through  Syria  and  Pales¬ 
tine,  and  his  destruction  of  so  many  cities,  the  Romans  began 
to  restore  what  they  had  destroyed,  and  on  a  scale  of  even 
greater  splendour.  Gabinius,  the  successor  of  Pompey  and 
the  predecessor  of  Crassus,  restored  and  fortified  Scythopolis, 
Samaria,  Gamala,  and  many  other  cities.  The  peace  and 
security  which  the  Roman  rule  confirmed,  made  Scythopolis 
the  most  powerful  of  the  ten  cities  which  formed  the  Decapolis; 
and  although  the  only  one  on  the  west  side  of  the  Jordan,  yet 
it  was  recognised  as  the  head  of  the  union.  Thence  came 
many  people  to  hear  the  Saviour  of  the  world;  and  in  the 
account  given  in  Matt.  iv.  25,  the  importance  of  Scythopolis4 
seems  to  have  caused  the  use  of  the  word  Decapolis  as  its 

1  Yon  Raumer,  Pal.  p.  144. 

2  See  Winer,  Bill.  Realiv.  i.  p.  176;  H.  Reland,  pp.  992-998  ;  Gesenius’ 
Note  to  Burckhardt,  ii.  p.  1058  ;  G.  Syncellus,  ed.  Dindorfii,  p.  405. 

3  See  G.  Cedressus,  p.  135,  ed.  Im.  Bekker. 

4  Fleischer  on  the  Codex  Rescriplus ,  in  Z.  de  Deatsch.  Morgen.  Ges.  i. 

p.  150. 



synonym.  At  the  time  of  Eusebius  and  Jerome1  it  was  a 
place  of  some  splendour,  and  the  seat  of  a  bishopric.  At  a 
later  period  it  became  the  chief  bishopric  in  Palestina  Secunda, 
and  possessed  a  celebrated  convent.  Under  Julian  the  Apos¬ 
tate’s  reign,  the  most  fearful  cruelties  were  practised  upon  the 
Christians ;  and  the  exposed  position  of  the  place  caused  the 
continuance  of  them  at  the  hands  of  barbarian  invaders,  until 
the  Franks,  in  order  to  escape  this  treatment,  removed  the 
bishopric  to  Nazareth.2 



Continuing  our  course  southward  from  Beisan  along  the 
valley  of  the  Jordan,  we  must  confess  that  if  our  knowledge 
northward  of  that  point  is  only  partial  and  fragmentary, 
south  of  it  it  is  still  more  so.  All  the  territory  lying  between 
Beisan  and  Jericho  must  be  considered  a  terra  incognita :  what 
we  know  of  it,  is  indebted  to  the  hasty  flights  of  two  or  three 
travellers  through  the  country,  under  great  disadvantages  for 
enabling  them  to  take  observations.  The  western  side  of  the 
river  is  almost  as  much  unknown  as  the  eastern ;  and  what  we 
know  has  been  learned  in  part  by  hearsay,  and  in  part  by 
glimpses  which  have  been  caught  from  high  and  distant  places, 
all  to  be  rectified  by  subsequent  nearer  and  more  careful  in¬ 
vestigations.  Yet  we  are,  it  must  be  confessed,  a  great  way 
removed  from  the  stage  of  ignorance  about  the  country  which 
was  experienced  by  that  master  in  the  art  of  observation, 
Burckhardt,  when  he  set  out  from  Beisan  to  go  southward 
through  the  Glior  by  way  of  Abu  Obeiclah  to  the  mountain 
ridge  Jilaad  es  Szalt,  on  the  south-east  side  of  the  Jordan,  and 
south  of  Wadi  Zerka.  We  have  not  only  the  record  of  Moly- 
neux’s  boat  voyage  down  the  Jordan,  scanty  as  it  is  [and  the 
more  full  narrative  of  Lynch],  but  casual  yet  repeated  allusions 

1  Reland,  Pal.  p.  995  ;  Gesenius1  Note  to  Burckhardt,  ii.  p.  1058 ;  von 
Raumer,  Pa l.  p.  147;  "Winer,  i.  p.  175;  Rosenmiiller,  Bib.  Alterth.  i.  p. 
173,  and  ii.  p.  105. 

2  Reland,  Pal.  p.  996. 



on  the  part  of  other  travellers,  which  clo  something  to  dispel 
the  darkness  which  used  to  rest  upon  this  region. 

Burckhardt1  is  the  first  who  threw  any  light  upon  this  great 
blank  in  our  geographical  knowledge.  He  alludes  to  the  great 
number  of  brooks  which  in  the  rainy  season  come  down  from 
the  mountains  in  all  seasons,  and  give  nourishment  to  a  luxuri¬ 
ant  growth  of  grass  and  weeds ;  yet  the  greater  part  of  the 
valley,  according  to  his  report,  is  an  arid  desert,  the  ground 
betraying  many  marks  of  ancient  volcanic  action,  and  only 
here  and  there  tilled.  Near  Beisan  the  soil  is  marl  through- 


out,  supporting  trees  only  here  and  there,  but  giving  susten¬ 
ance  to  a  plentiful  harvest  of  bushes  and  reeds. 

The  rivers2  which  flow  into  the  Jordan,  south  of  Beisan,  and 
on  the  west  side,  are  four  in  number— Wadi  el  Malih,  Wadi 
Mejedda,  Wadi  el  Beydhan,  and  Wadi  el  Fariah.  The  two  first 
specified  are  mentioned  in  the  Jihannuma  by  the  same  names. 
On  the  east  side,  Burckhardt  mentions  other  four — Wadi  el 
Arab,  Wadi  el  Koszeir,  Wadi  et  Taybe,  and  Wadi  el  Seklab. 
These  are  all  mentioned  in  the  Jihannuma.  He  also  gives 
the  names  of  three  cities — F assail,  el-Oja,  and  Ayn  Sultan — 
leaving  the  impression  that  they  are  found  nearer  Beisan  than 
J ericho,  and  that  there  are  no  other  ruins  between  the  two.  The 
reports  of  subsequent  travellers  show,  however,  that  Burck¬ 
hardt,  generally  so  punctiliously  exact,  has  fallen  into  slight 
inaccuracies  here,  as  the  true  order  of  the  rivers  on  the  western 
side  is  different  from  that  given  by  him,  and  as  the  ruined 
cities  which  he  mentions  are  found  in  the  immediate  neigh¬ 
bourhood  of  J  ericho.  And  in  addition  to  the  cities  mentioned, 
Schultz  has  identified  conjecturally  Archelais,  Alexandrium, 
Phasgelis,  Kypros,  and  others. 

It  is  impossible  entirely  to  overlook  the  full  report  which  De 
Bertou  has  given  of  the  results  of  his  journey  down  the  valley, 
although  his  meagre  command  of  the  Arabic  has  rendered  many 
of  his  results  of  less  value  than  they  would  otherwise  have  been. 
But  it  is  not  to  be  doubted,  that  others  who  may  subsequently 
go  over  the  same  ground  will  find  his  observations  of  great  im¬ 
portance.  Yet,  as  Bertou’s  course  led  him  along  the  tops  of  the 
hills  which  bound  the  valley  on  the  west,  we  cannot  learn  from 

1  Burckhardt,  Trav.  p.  344. 

2  Yon  Hammer- P n rgstall  in  Wien.  Jahrb.  1836,  vol.  lxxiv.  p.  52. 

YOL.  II.  Y 



him  the  details  relating  to  the  lowlands  so  fully  as  from  Moly- 
neux  [and  Lynch]. 

De  Bertou  found  the  breadth  of  the  Ghor  to  be  about  thirty 
thousand  feet,  or  not  far  from  five  English  miles.  The  country 
declined  gradually  towards  the  south-west  as  far  as  Sukkot,  and 
was  only  partially  cultivated :  the  grain  was  then  in  its  most 
advanced  stage.  At  Sukkot,  De  Bertou  discovered  some  frag¬ 
ments  of  columns,  and  some  traces  of  earthworks,  leading  him 
to  the  conclusion  that  there  was  once  a  city.  The  Jordan, 
opposite  to  Beisan,  was  found  to  be  1027  Paris  feet  below  the 
level  of  the  sea.  There  must  be,  therefore,  between  Lake 
Tiberias  and  that  spot  a  fall  of  305  feet. 

He  had  great  difficulty  in  procuring  an  Arab  escort  down 
the  river ;  and  all  whom  he  could  procure  were  vagabonds  and 
robbers.  They  called  each  other  Satans;  a  name  which  Barth1 
afterwards  heard  used  by  the  members  of  the  Beni-Saker  tribe. 
He  was  obliged  to  leave  all  his  valuables  behind  him  at  Beisan, 
and  thus  in  this  state  he  entered  upon  a  most  dangerous 

He  first  crossed  the  brook  Abu  Fares,2  and  seventeen 
minutes  later  the  Wadi  Shubash.  Twelve  minutes  more 
brought  him  to  the  spring  Ain  er  Radghah,  which  springs  from 
an  eminence,  on  whose  summit  are  ruins,  including  fragments 
of  pillars  and  the  tomb  of  a  saint:  the  name  is  not  known. 
Twenty-five  minutes  farther  on  the  Wadi  Fatun  is  crossed ;  and 
twelve  more,  Ain  Kaun.  A  little  farther  beyond,  the  valley 
narrows,  the  mountains  on  the  west  advance  towards  the  east ; 
and  a  little  southward  the  Wadi  el  Malih  breaks  through,  enter¬ 
ing  the  Jordan  directly  opposite  the  Wadi  el  Hemar,  which 
comes  down  from  the  Jebel  Ajlun.3 

After  passing  the  Wadi  el  Malih,  or  Salt  Valley,  De  Bertou 
remarks  that  there  is  an  immediate  change  in  the  vegetation : 
up  to  that  point  there  is  a  vast  quantity  of  sappy  growths,  such 
as  grass,  small  clover,  anemones,  and  lavender,  while  southward 
there  is  only  a  dry  parched  soil,  on  which  grow  light  grass, 
immortelles,  and  thistles. 

From  Wadi  el  Malih  to  Wadi  el  Faria  there  is  a  road  of 

1  Dr  H.  Barth,  Tagebuch ,  1847,  MS. 

2  De  Bertou,  Mem.  l.c.  xii.  p.  155. 

3  Burckharclt,  Trav.  p.  345. 


eight  hours’  length,  crossed  by  a  full  dozen  of  wadis,  which 
come  down  from  the  west,  and  terminate  in  the  Jordan.  The 
first  of  these  is  the  Wadi  Fyadh,  which  divides  into  several  arms: 
the  second,  Wadi  Jam  el,  a  very  deep  watercourse,  enters  the 
river  opposite  the  bold  shore  on  which